Jeramey Jannene
Plats and Parcels

330 Kilbourn Office Complex To Be Sold

Plus: A recap of the week's real estate news.

By - Mar 21st, 2021 11:51 pm
330 Kilbourn. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

330 Kilbourn. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

One of Milwaukee’s largest office complexes is expected to be sold.

New York-based investment firm Group RMC is set to acquire the two-building 330 Kilbourn complex. The sale, which comes via an anonymously-sourced report from Sean Ryan, would be the largest office transaction in the city since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold.

The 14-story buildings, built in 1982 and 1984, fill the East Town block bordered by E. State St., E. Kilbourn Ave., N. Milwaukee St. and N. Broadway. Together, the two towers have 475,313 square feet of leasable space. They sit atop a connecting atrium and 479-stall, underground parking structure.

Long known as Plaza East, the complex underwent a substantial renovation in 2016 that resulted in a rebranding alongside many common area improvements.

Current owner Tishman Speyer landed a number of new tenants in recent years and boasts a roster that includes the Mandel Group, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Green Bay Packers, Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, Founders 3, Ritz Holman, Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown LLP, Moertl, Wilkins & Campbell S.C. and anchor tenant Associated Bank.

But Associated Bank is slated to move out. The firm acquired the Milwaukee Center office tower, two blocks to the west, and is rebranding it the Associated Bank River Center as part of a substantial renovation.

Enter Group RMC. Billed as a real estate co-investment group, the firm invests explicitly in underappreciated office properties. It reports owning 19.4 million square feet of office space, primarily in the Midwest and Southeast. According to its website, its only Wisconsin property is the Brookfield Lakes office complex.

Tishman Speyer, a New York-based real estate firm, has owned the complex through affiliate Flanders Westborough Delaware Inc. since 2002 according to city records.

The buildings were designed by famed architect Helmut Jahn. The Hop, as of 2018, operates on the south side of the complex, with a stop a block away. In 2009, the building is designated LEED Silver, an environmental friendliness designation, for existing buildings.

Included as part of the complex is a 749-stall, six-level parking structure located a half block south at 330 E. Wells St.

As of Sunday evening, no transaction was available in the state’s real estate transfer records database.

The office complex is assessed for $41 million. The nearby parking garage is assessed for an additional $8.5 million.

Weekly Recap

New East Side Homes

Developers Tim Gokhman and Ann Shuk, second-generation business partners at New Land Enterprises, are constructing new personal residences for their families on the 2300 block of N. Terrace Ave.

That alone is not enough to warrant coverage in this column. New homes are constructed across Milwaukee frequently with no media attention.

But the new homes are more than simple rambler-style ranch homes. Together they’re an urban infill project that must balance the desire for modern homes while fitting in alongside century-old neighboring homes. And they’ve been subject to many public meetings.

Read the full article

Small Apartment Building Planned for Harambee

A three-story, 13-unit apartment building is planned for 540 W. Ring St.

The 20,053-square-foot, vacant lot sits immediately south of the Park Hill Apartments, for which the new project would be an expansion.

Cityscape Architecture, on behalf of property owner Crown Court Properties, filed in late February for a preliminary plan review with the Department of Neighborhood Services. The application says the new building would contain 38,873 square feet of space.

Read the full article

Historic Commission Says Bay View Cottages Are Historic

The Historic Preservation Commission voted unanimously Thursday afternoon to create a new, seven-home historic district on S. Superior St. in Bay View.

But the Common Council has the final say on whether the homes are protected.

Area Alderwoman Marina Dimitrijevic, who lives a couple blocks from the houses, told Urban Milwaukee she will wait until a committee hearing before making a final decision.

Read the full article

Council Approves New Deal for The Couture

The Common Council, aiming to end infighting within City Hall, unanimously adopted a revised development agreement for The Couture on Friday morning.

The 56-page agreement details the terms and timeline for how developer Barrett Lo Visionary Development is to proceed with completing the 44-story luxury apartment tower with a streetcar station in its base. The city, through tax incremental financing, is providing $19 million to build the three-story transit concourse and relocate a sewer on the site at 909 E. Michigan St.

The latest deal comes after City Attorney Tearman Spencer refused to sign the prior agreement, approved March 2nd.

Read the full article

Utility Moratorium Ending April 15th

A year-long moratorium on utility shutoffs due to the COVID-19 pandemic will end on April 15 in a unanimous decision Thursday by the Public Service Commission.

Commission Chair Rebecca Valcq said she thinks utilities should be allowed to resume disconnections, highlighting the expansion of vaccination statewide, the extension of unemployment benefits and billions of federal aid that’s slated for Wisconsin.

As of Feb. 15, there were 254 utilities who reported that 93,263 residential customers and 4,810 business customers would be disconnected for not paying their bills when the moratorium lifts on April 15. More than 7,500 customers at risk of being disconnected are considered low-income.

Read the full article

Fiserv Forum Hotel Would Rise Nine Stories, Have Two Restaurants

A firm selected by the Milwaukee Bucks is advancing plans to build a new Marriott Autograph Collection hotel across from Fiserv Forum.

North Central Group (NCG) is proposing to build a nine-story, 205-room hotel at 420 W. Juneau Ave. The hotel would include restaurants on the first and ninth floors as well as first-floor commercial space and an 8,700-square-foot event and meeting space on the second floor with outdoor terrace. Select guest rooms would have balconies.

The proposal will undergo its first review before the City Plan Commission on March 29th. The team first announced NCG as the winner of a competitive bidding process in September. An affiliate of the Bucks acquired the multi-parcel Park East corridor for $1 as part of the stadium financing deal.

Read the full article

Republicans Reject Evers Entire Capital Budget

Republicans on Wisconsin’s State Building Commission voted Wednesday to reject every building project in Gov. Tony Evers‘ capital budget, punting debate on the $2.4 billion proposal until later this year.

While the move may jeopardize dozens of the governor’s proposals, it’s too soon to say which ones. Republicans on the Building Commission also rejected the governor’s entire $2.5 billion capital budget two years ago, but GOP lawmakers eventually approved a $1.7 billion capital budget months later.

Evers’ latest capital budget includes $1 billion worth of projects at the University of Wisconsin System, in addition to funding for a new state office building in Milwaukee and facilities to treat juvenile offenders once the Lincoln Hills juvenile prison is closed.

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Harbor District Developer Seeks New Tenants

The Druml Company is moving to secure new tenants for its Harbor District property at the south end of Walker’s Point.

The six-building campus, highly visible from Interstate 43/94, runs along the east side of S. 4th St. from W. Burnham St. to W. Becher St.

It was the long-time home of Paul Davis Restoration, but the fire and water damage repair company relocated to a new building in Pewaukee in the past year.

Now the company’s former owner, Daniel Druml, is finding new uses for his riverfront properties.

To support his effort, the city took the unusual step of approving a master sign plan for the multi-property campus.

Read the full article

Solving the Townhome Design Dilemma?

Townhome design has proven tricky in Milwaukee.

Developers, architects and city planners have tried various strategies to create a semi-private space for residents while maintaining an engaging public realm.

The right balance creates a street-level patio that residents actively use while also providing visual interest for passing pedestrians. The wrong balance creates a space that looks like a fortress or goes the opposite direction, creating a private space so exposed that few residents use it.

After many modifications, New Land Enterprises hopes it has found the right balance for eight townhomes planned along N. Van Buren St. in its new 251-unit Nova apartment building.

Read the full article

Committee Approves 122-Room Hotel

A new extended-stay hotel planned for Milwaukee’s far northwest side was recommended for zoning approval by the Common Council’s Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee on Tuesday morning.

Kansas-based New Era Development Group plans to buy a 2.89-acre site from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and construct a four-story, 122-room WoodSpring Suites hotel on the site.

Read the full article

Big Property Owners Gear Up To Sue City

Milwaukee’s 2020 assessment process generated a record number of appeals. So many that the city suspended the process for 2021.

Almost a year later, a record dollar value of challenges remains. The Common Council’s Judiciary & Legislation Committee recommended Monday to allow 94 unresolved claims, representing $876 million in city-assessed value, to go to court.

In total, the owners of the 94 contested properties believe the combined value of their properties should be reduced from $876 million to $583 million. The change would reduce their combined property tax bills by $7.09 million.

Read the full article

Delayed Avenir Project Planned for April

Construction on the second phase of the Avenir apartment complex at 418 E. Ogden Ave., originally scheduled to begin in Spring 2020, is planned for April, but it could also be delayed another year.

The project is a 64-unit apartment building constituting the second phase of a larger three-building apartment complex surrounding a central parking garage. It’s being developed by Weidner Apartment Homes after changing hands several times during the past two decades. The parcel is bounded by E. Lyon St., N. Jefferson St., E. Ogden Ave. and N. Milwaukee St.

Read the full article

Troubled Tavern Could Become Veteran’s Housing

A growing real estate firm is buying its third formerly tax-delinquent property from the City of Milwaukee. This time it’s a former bar just south of Historic Mitchell Street most recently known for cocaine trafficking.

Business partners Jeff Musa and Jose Pimienta will purchase and renovate the two-story building at 1905 S. 6th St. The building could end up being refurbished as a home for veterans.

Their latest acquisition, for which they’ll pay $10,000, is similar to many other turn-of-the-century commercial buildings. The 2,1230-square-foot building has a commercial space downstairs and residential space upstairs. But the interior layout is more akin to a rooming house than a traditional apartment building.

Read the full article

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