Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

Mixed-Use Development Proposed for Third Ward

Parking lot at Water and St. Paul would be location, but with how big of a building?

By - May 17th, 2021 04:20 pm
333 N. Water St. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

333 N. Water St. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

A global real estate firm with a presence in 240 cities is proposing to redevelop a surface parking lot at a key Milwaukee intersection.

According to an agenda released by the Historic Third Ward Architectural Review Board, Hines Acquisitions is proposing a “mixed-use residential development” for the property at 333 N. Water St.

Located at the southwest corner of N. Water St. and E. St. Paul Ave., the parking lot is kitty-corner from the Milwaukee Public Market and directly on the Milwaukee River.

The proposal, for which additional details are scant, will be discussed at Wednesday’s architectural review board meeting.

Conceptual plans from 2017 called for a 20-to-30-story tower with a hotel and apartments on the 0.79-acre site. It was acquired that year for $5.6 million by an affiliate of the same group developing The Avenue, including Interstate Parking. The property is currently assessed for $3.4 million.

Hines is familiar with the Milwaukee market. It served as development manager on Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons and the insurance company’s 7Seventy7, the 35-story, $100-million luxury apartment tower.

Hines’ senior managing director Tom D’Arcy, based out of the firm’s office, is listed as the point of contact on the application. D’Arcy did not respond to a request for comment Monday.

Should the new proposal be similar in scale to what was proposed in 2017, it could form a set of bookends for the neighborhood, with the other end being the proposed, 11-story Marriott boutique hotel at 125-129 N. Water St, which would be built on a partially vacant site at the south end of the neighborhood.

Hines’ website says that the company has 181 developments currently underway and has redeveloped or acquired 485 million square feet of real estate. It currently owns 622 properties totaling 256 million square feet as part of a $160.9 billion portfolio of assets under management.

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5 thoughts on “Eyes on Milwaukee: Mixed-Use Development Proposed for Third Ward”

  1. 45 years in the City says:

    According to JS, there would be 400 parking spaces in the building (presumably sub-water table). In one of the most walkable, transit friendly neighborhoods, why are we still fixated on suburban-like parking space numbers?

    With the costs reduced due to not having so much parking, the apartments might be more affordable (by third ward standards).

  2. Mark Nicolini says:

    The article fails to raise any questions about the current assessed value of this property, cited as $3.4 million. In 2017 the property was sold for $5.6 million, according to the article.

    Wisconsin law establishes an arm’s length sale of the subject property as the best indicator of the taxable value of said property. It would be interesting to know how the current assessment came to be $2.2 million lower than the sale. For example, was the current lower assessment based on an income approach, relative to its use as a parking facility? Single family residential ;property owners, still feeling the effects of the 2020 revaluation, might be interested in knowing.

  3. B says:

    It is good to see another surface parking lot downtown developed into something for humans.

  4. SiddyMonty says:

    Wish the development was in scale to the adjacent buildings at the intersection. How can we need so many big buildings in the city? I understand that it’s a cost of $$/ft for the developers, but I’d rather they cared about the overall appearance of downtown. This last decade has so so so many buildings that look like they were designed with a Lego set, lacking in imagination…completely UNmemorable.

    Can this project be rethought?

  5. Jeramey Jannene says:

    @Mark – I don’t have great insight into the specific assessment for that property, but it was assessed for $1.2 million before the sale. Your suggestion of the income basis seems reasonable. The property, following the sale, was never assessed for the full sale price.

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