The 1500s Development May Be Nixed
Owner-occupant of proposed Lower East Side office and townhouse project lists property for sale.
A proposal to develop a three-story office building and four high-end townhomes just north of Downtown might not happen, at least not under the owner who first proposed the development.
Entrepreneur Josh Delaney listed the land and development plan, known as The 1500s, for sale for $1.5 million in late July.
Delaney’s umbrella firm SnackTime Capital was to occupy the 10,500-square-foot office building as well as his cannabidiol company, FABCBD. The entrepreneur was to live in one of the townhomes with his family and rent out the remaining three for up to $10,000 per month.
Both internet-driven businesses are currently based in St. Francis. But after introducing the development plan in April 2021, Delaney sold 80% of FABCBD to High Tide Inc., a publicly-traded Canadian cannabis company. However, even after the sale, he was still talking about moving the proposal forward.
“I plan to be there for a long time. It’s to be our forever place,” said Delaney in July 2021 during a Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee hearing. He said he currently lived in a nearby apartment building. “We like Downtown.”
When asked for additional details, Delaney declined to elaborate aside from saying that he was undecided.
However, the listing remains active on Loopnet.
The new owner of the property would inherit the ability to develop the proposed office building even if they didn’t purchase the specific plans from Delaney. The zoning for the office building site is governed by a detailed planned development, a specialized zoning district for the specific proposal.
Partial demolition work was completed on the 8,880-square-foot, two-story former childcare center currently on the site, but a zoning change request was submitted in May to allow that building to be repurposed instead of demolished. The Common Council has not acted on the one-page request from Delaney and project architecture firm Design Manage Advise.
During the zoning approval process, Delaney said the office building would be used by his 12-member team. But, in May 2021, he also told Urban Milwaukee that several employees or contractors were scattered across the country and that hiring in Milwaukee for an internet marketing skillset was a challenge.
In addition to FABCBD and The 1500s, other brands currently included on the SnackTime website include Plant Goods, Fresh Leaf, Whey Goods and Apachii Capital (which owns the development site). The non-real estate entities are primarily health-focused online brands focused on selling direct-to-consumer products.
The three parcels included in the development site are at 1524 N. Jefferson St., 1540 N. Jefferson St. and 1546 N. Jefferson St.