Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

Developer Buys Site For East Side Tower

New Land Enterprises affiliate purchases Renaissance Place.

By - Feb 17th, 2023 03:15 pm
New Land Enterprises' proposed 1490 N. Farwell Ave. building. Rendering by Korb + Associates Architects.

New Land Enterprises’ proposed 1490 N. Farwell Ave. building. Rendering by Korb + Associates Architects.

The developer behind a proposed 25-story East Side apartment tower purchased the site, even before the city hosts a formal public hearing on a zoning change to enable the project.

An affiliate of New Land Enterprises, Renaissance MKE LLC, paid $3.4 million for the shuttered Renaissance Place event center at 1451 N. Prospect Ave. and the adjacent Mexican Consulate, 1443 N. Prospect Ave. according to state real estate records.

The 310-unit apartment building is proposed to be developed facing N. Farwell Ave. atop a rear parking lot long used by the venue and the consulate.

Designed by Korb + Associates Architects, the new tower would leverage its density to support a number of amenities. A rooftop terrace and pool are proposed, as are an indoor-outdoor club room, fitness center, golf simulator, coworking space, pet grooming center, car wash station and secured bicycle storage room.

The Renaissance Place event venue closed in 2022. New Land hopes to find a new operator that could potentially reconfigure it as a social club with coworking space, lounge space or other amenities that could be leveraged by residents of its proposed building. The consulate would maintain a lease for its space.

The properties were long owned by affiliates of Taxman Investment Company and were recently marketed for sale by Founders 3.

The new building would include a seven-story parking structure with 464 spaces. Similar in scale to 7Seventy7 and 333 N. Water St., two apartment buildings with which it would compete, the garage would serve both the apartments and prior parking lot users.

The proposed apartment mix includes 33 studios, 195 one-bedrooms, 49 two-bedrooms and 33 two-bedroom-plus-den units. No public financing is proposed for the project.

A community meeting was held for the proposal in early February. Formal public hearings still need to be held before the City Plan Commission and Common Council’s Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee.

The 20,000-square-foot Renaissance Place building was constructed in 1907 as a home for the First Church of Christ, Scientist under the designs of Solon Spencer Beman. The consulate building was constructed in 1950 as a school for the former church. The final development site is approximately 0.6 acres.

The proposed tower site is located between E. Curtis Pl. and E. Ogden Ave., the latter serving as the northeastern terminus of The Hop.

Further north on N. Farwell Ave., New Land has developed or rehabilitated several buildings. Urbanite, its most recent Lower East Side development, houses the firm’s offices and 153 apartments at 1840 N. Farwell Ave. It also developed The Sterling (1550 E. Royall Pl.) and The Abbotsford (1920 N. Farwell Ave.), secured approval for the Latitude apartments (1857 E. Kenilworth Ave.) and rehabilitated several existing buildings.

To the south, New Land has completed or is under construction on several buildings in Downtown and Walker’s Point. The 25-story, 259-unit Ascent, the tallest mass timber building in the world, was completed last year. Construction is nearing the home stretch on Nova, a nine-story, 251-unit building. Work is set to ramp up on the six-story, 87-unit Via, the company’s fourth Walker’s Point apartment complex.


Renaissance Place

Consulate Photos


New Land development site on 1400 block of Prospect Avenue. Image from City of Milwaukee land management system.

New Land development site on 1400 block of Prospect Avenue. Image from City of Milwaukee land management system.

One thought on “Eyes on Milwaukee: Developer Buys Site For East Side Tower”

  1. Marty Ellenbecker says:

    The shorter part of the building serves up a heapin’ helpin’ o’ blah. The tall parts look pretty good. The turned Windows relieve the boredom of what would be a bland expanse of glass.

    I can’t help but wonder if the extra interior reflected/bounced light from the projecting end outweighs the shadow cast by the adjacent projection.
    Or does this provide a solar heat reduction?

    Is the placement of the Farwell address sign on the Curtis Street side
    an error or a prank? I couldn’t have navigated this rendering without Mr. Jannene’s photo caption. The “context blocks”
    don’t even remotely represent the area.

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