Jeramey Jannene
Plats and Parcels

Three Downtown Hotels Will Miss DNC

Plus: Former Toys R Us becoming grocery store, and Pabst Mansion plans auction.

By - Jun 2nd, 2019 07:37 pm
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Holiday Inn Express, Home2 by Hilton and Tru by Hilton Hotels. Rendering by Base4.

Holiday Inn Express, Home2 by Hilton and Tru by Hilton Hotels. Rendering by Base4.

Three new downtown hotels won’t open in time for the Democratic National Convention in July 2020.

Demolition work is still ongoing on the site of a three-hotel, two-building complex planned by JR Hospitality and Hawkeye Hotels. The firms intend to develop and operate Holiday Inn Express, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Tru by Hilton hotels at the southwest corner of E. Michigan St. and N. Jefferson St.

JR Hospitality managing partner Roshan Bhakta told Urban Milwaukee in March that the plan was to open the hotels in time for the political convention, but Hawkeye Hotels development manager Samir Patel said this week that things have been delayed.

“We won’t be open by the DNC, unfortunately,” Patel told BizTimes. Demolition work is well underway, but did not start early enough, he said.

Under a plan released last summer, the two Hilton-brand hotels would share a 215-room building, and the third hotel, a Holiday Inn Express, would have 116 rooms.

Four other downtown hotels are still on track to open in time for the political convention, with one opening next week (see below).

27th Street Toys R Us Becoming Hispanic Supermarket

A former big box store will see new life as a Hispanic grocery store under a plan by Robert Montemayor. Tom Daykin was the first to report that the former Toys R Us store at 3920 S. 27th St. was sold to Monte Enterprises.

According to listing broker John Kuhn of Cushman & Wakefield/Boerke Co., Montemayor intends to operate a Hispanic supermarket in the space. Montemayor also owns Monterrey Market at 3014 S. 13st St. and the recently opened The Angry Taco restaurant at 753 N. Water St.

Montemayor acquired the building for $2.65 million. Built in 1969, it was most recently assessed for $2.29 million. Toys R Us filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2017 and was liquidated in 2018.

Pabst Mansion Plans Auction

You’ll soon be able to decorate your house like a beer baron.

The historic Pabst Mansion (2000 W. Wisconsin Ave.) is doing some spring cleaning. The non-profit will host an outdoor estate sale on June 8th from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Items are promised to run from $2 to $1,500.

“After opening our doors as a historic home for tours 40 years ago, our focus has been to secure decorative arts furnishings and artwork that are original to the Pabst Mansion. Through the generosity of our donors and Pabst family members, many pieces have returned to the Mansion. Among the items available for sale are fine art, decorative objects and furniture that had been on display but have since been exchanged for the original pieces now on view,” said mansion president Pamela Williams-Lime in a statement.

See Inside the Saint Kate The Arts Hotel

The new Saint Kate The Arts Hotel isn’t simply a case of throwing a new coat of paint on the former Intercontinental Hotel. Marcus Corp. has undertaken a top-to-bottom renovation that has transformed the downtown hotel into an art showcase.

The hotel doesn’t open until June 4th, but we can take you inside the stunning redevelopment today. See the photos.

Abele Demolishing Eschweiler Mansion

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele created quite a stir this week by submitting a demolition permit for a historic mansion overlooking Lake Michigan in Shorewood.

Abele, as first reported by my colleague Michael Horneacquired the house for $2.6 million in November and now intends to demolish it. Designed by famed architect Alexander C. Eschweiler, the 9,762-square-foot home is not protected by a local historic designation. Abele intends to build a new home in its place.

And while the house is being gutted today, you can see historic interior photos and some more recent shots in an article we published yesterday.

Bradley Center Bites the Dust

While less than 50 yards away the Milwaukee Bucks were debuting a new fountain outside Fiserv Forum, the last of the Bradley Center was toppled Friday morning (covering this reporter in a wave of concrete dust, all in a day’s work).

It’s been less than six months since a contractor blew the roof off the building, signaling the start of major demolition. And now all that’s left is a pile of rubble.

You can learn more on how the Bucks are recycling most of the building materials and what the team intends to do next in our latest Friday Photos feature.

Streetcar Extensions on Hold

While ridership on the 2.1-mile first phase of The Hop continues to exceed expectations, the Milwaukee Common Council and Mayor Tom Barrett have yet to find common ground on a $160 million expansion plan. Barrett’s plan would extend the system to Bronzeville and northern Walker’s Point by 2024 and immediately start construction on a line to the convention center. But council members, led by Jose G. Perez and Robert Bauman, have concerns that the line doesn’t go far enough south into Walker’s Point.

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