Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

HNTB Expanding Downtown Office

Engineering firm moved Downtown in 2019, added 20 employees and hopes to hire 30 more.

By - Oct 14th, 2021 03:46 pm
Two Fifty at 250 E. Wisconsin Ave. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Two Fifty at 250 E. Wisconsin Ave. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Engineering firm HNTB announced it was relocating its regional office and 90 employees to downtown Milwaukee in Feb. 2019.

Now it’s adding even more space as it grows its Milwaukee workforce. The company reports having 110 employees working from the new office with 30 open positions.

The news comes as the office market remains in flux as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

HNTB originally leased approximately 24,000 square feet of space across the top two floors of the recently renovated Two Fifty office tower, 250 E. Wisconsin Ave. Now it’s adding 3,100 square feet of space to its lease, growing its footprint on the 19th floor while still leasing out all of the 20th floor.

“Even with market sectors facing significant economic headwinds in 2020 and 2021, HNTB has continued to hire talented engineers, planners and construction staff in Wisconsin and currently has over 30 open positions. Downtown Milwaukee continues to be a tremendous location for retaining our existing team and attracting additional talent,” said Ashley Booth, HNTB Wisconsin office leader and vice president, in a statement.

HNTB’s Milwaukee office includes a mix of infrastructure planners, engineers and other professionals. The company was previously located in the Park Place office complex on the city’s Far Northwest Side.

The employee-owned firm, headquartered in Kansas City, has offices and customers across the globe. In Milwaukee, some of its biggest clients include the city, Wisconsin Department of Transportation, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District and Milwaukee County.

“Designing and delivering complex infrastructure solutions that keep communities moving and prosperous demands talented teams, close collaboration and strong partnerships,” said Booth. “Our expanded presence in Milwaukee’s vibrant downtown area promises to strengthen HNTB’s already proven ability to deliver for clients, some of whom we have served here for more than 60 years.”

The firm now leases 27,00 square feet of space in the building.

HNTB employees will soon be able to keep a watchful eye on two of their projects without having to ride the elevator down. The Hop, for which the company provided engineering services, has a station just outside the building. The East-West Bus Rapid Transit line, currently under construction in Wauwatosa, will run down Wisconsin Avenue starting next year.

The firm, which also does a considerable amount of consulting on highway projects, served as a consultant on the construction of Fiserv Forum.

The 20-story office building, located at the intersection of N. Broadway and E. Wisconsin Ave., had a 20 percent occupancy rate before being acquired by Chicago-based real estate firms Fulcrum Asset Advisors and Millbrook Properties in 2015 for $9.75 million. The firms invested $8.8 million in overhauling the building.

Built in 1973, the tower has 193,031 square feet of space according to city assessment records. An attached parking structure includes approximately 440 stalls.

An Associated Bank branch is located on the building’s first floor. In 2018, the bank installed a massive sign that wraps around the exterior of the building. Freshii, a fast-casual, health-focused restaurant, also opened on the first floor in 2018.

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