Jeramey Jannene
Plats and Parcels

Regal Ware Moving HQ From Kewaskum To Milwaukee

Plus: Beradda buys and Hendricks sells buildings. And recap of week's real estate news.

By - May 7th, 2023 06:19 pm
One Park Plaza. Image from JLL.

One Park Plaza. Image from JLL.

Cookware manufacturer Regal Ware is preparing to move its headquarters to One Park Plaza on Milwaukee’s far Northwest Side.

The move includes relocating approximately three dozen employees from the Village of Kewaskum 30 miles south to the Park Place business park. The company announced in March that it is selling its current headquarters to the village for use as a civic center.

The company’s manufacturing plant will remain in West Bend. A Kewaskum plant was closed in 2003.

Regal Ware is expected to lease an entire floor in the 12-story building, 11270 W. Park Pl. A leasing website from building broker Jones Lang LaSalle says the eighth floor, approximately 18,000 square feet, is available.

The move has yet to be finalized, but a sign permit filed with the Department of Neighborhood Services shows the company’s logo.

With nearly 200,000 square feet of leasable space, the building’s other tenants include law firm Kasdorf, Lewis & Swietlik and the corporate offices of Manitowoc Co. and A.O. Smith. Several new tenants have leased space in the tower since 2020. Douglas Dynamics moved its executive team to the building last year, relocating the employees from a northwest-side manufacturing plant at N. 76th St. and W. Calumet Rd. Other new tenants include Action Coach, Burbach and Stansbury, Cleaver-Brooks and Sentinel Technologies.

Originally built in 1984 as part of the Park Place office complex, the building was sold in 2020 to New York City-based Sovereign Partners for $5.75 million. Sovereign added a new fitness center, training facility, tenant lounge, renovated common areas and a year-round golf simulator before selling the building in 2022 for $21.9 million to an affiliate of New Jersey-based investor Lawrence Solomon.

One Park Plaza’s twin office tower, Two Park Plaza, has long been owned by Waukesha-based Interstate Partners. A number of other smaller office buildings dot the office park.

Berrada Buys Two Buildings

Milwaukee’s biggest landlord keeps getting bigger while another long-time large firm is selling off properties.

Berrada Properties acquired the Millerand Apartment, 3035 W. Wisconsin Ave., for $10.4 million and the Parkside Senior Apartments, 2621 W. Pierce St., for $8 million from affiliates of Blankstein Enterprises according to real estate transfer records posted in March.

The eight-story Millerand building is an architecturally significant apartment building originally designed in 1925 by Martin Tullgren & Sons in the Neo-Classical style for developer Morris Miller. City assessments indicate it contains 72 apartments. It was most recently assessed for $2.39 million. It’s located on the Near West Side where Berrada has acquired several buildings in the past two years.

The three-story Parkside building, built in 1966, lacks the architectural detail of the Millerand, but all of its north-facing units have a view of the Mitchell Park Domes across the street. The building has 89 units according to city assessment records. Residency is restricted to individuals 55 or older. It was most recently assessed for $2.84 million.

It’s the second major sale for Blankstein, which sold 19 properties with a combined 784 apartments to Katz Properties in February. According to state real estate transfer records, the combined value of that sale was $83.9 million. Those properties were all located on the city’s East Side and a handful of suburbs.

Blankstein, a third-generation property management company, was founded in 1932. It does business today as Optimum Property Management and still owns a number of properties in the region, including its office at 2120 W. Clybourn St. Blankstein’s CEO is Eugene Bass.

Hendricks Sells Building

Diane Hendricks‘ real estate company sold an industrial building her roofing supply company, ABC Supply Co. Inc., intends to occupy.

Hendricks Commercial Properties sold the 65,357-square-foot building in February for $7.4 million to an affiliate of Brookfield-based Sterling Investment Real Estate.

ABC Supply still intends to move into the building, at 11200 W. Heather Ave., an attorney for Hendricks confirmed to reporter Cara Spoto in March. The facility is expected to be operational next month. It would be the Beloit-based company’s first location in Milwaukee. The property is located southwest of the intersection of N. 107th St. and W. Brown Deer Rd. in the Granville Business Park.

The roofing supplier secured a zoning deviation from the City Plan Commission last September in order to use a portion of the property for outdoor product storage. ABC real estate asset manager Don Jeziorski said the facility would initially have 10 to 15 employees, with planned growth to 25 to 30 workers.

Hendricks acquired the property for $3.95 million in 2013. The one-story industrial facility was constructed in 1999. It was most recently leased to Elk Grove, IL-based FPM Heat Treating, which laid off its 27 Milwaukee employees and shuttered the plant in early 2020. ABC representatives said the heat treating company damaged the building, requiring substantial repair work before the roofing company could move in.

ABC Supply reports, as of 2020, having more than 15,000 employees, almost 800 locations and more than $12 billion in annual sales. Its current Milwaukee-area locations include Hartland, Jackson, West Allis and West Milwaukee.

Weekly Recap

New Plan For Bay View’s Zillman Park

There’s a new plan for how to rehabilitate Zillman Park at the northern end of Bay View.

After multiple years of community meetings, city officials have changed the project plan and are now increasing the project budget.

“The resulting feedback differed from our original idea of just creating this new play space and updating the existing infrastructure,” said Department of City Development project manager Alyssa Remington on Tuesday when the Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee reviewed the proposal.

Read the full article

King Park Housing Project Loses Out On Affordable Tax Credits

One piece of a major homeownership project in King Park has been slowed after the development team lost out on affordable housing tax credits.

In 2022, the county allocated $6.5 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) toward the development of 120 single-family homes on scattered vacant lots throughout the neighborhood. At the helm of the project is the Community Development Alliance (CDA).

The plan calls for three-bedroom homes that can be sold for $110,000 or less. The public funds will help close the gap between building costs and the affordable purchase price. James Mathy, Housing Division director, previously told Urban Milwaukee, “Without ARPA funds, you wouldn’t be able to make these affordable.”

Habitat for Humanity was selected to build 80 new single-family homes, and Emem Group to build 20 new duplexes. Emem was planning to use low-income housing tax credits (LIHTC) to fund its part of project, but was not awarded any credits in the latest round by the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). The state agency distributes both federal and state credits, which are then sold to finance housing in exchange for making specific units aside available at affordable rates to lower-income households.

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Piles Being Driven For New Third Ward Apartments

Residents and visitors to the Historic Third Ward can’t catch a break. The official sound of the neighborhood might soon be that of a pile driver.

But soon after the banging stops, there will be hundreds more residents to enjoy all that the neighborhood has to offer.

The latest pile driving marks the start of construction on a five-story, 258-unit apartment complex at the southeastern corner of the neighborhood. Its foundation work follows that of the 31-story 333 N. Water St. Below-ground work on that tower wrapped up earlier this year, and the building itself now climbs higher by the week in the northwest corner of the neighborhood.

The newest pile driving will create the foundation for Minnesota-based Kaeding Development Group‘s complex. The list of first-floor amenities that are intended to activate the building from the street in addition to attracting tenants includes a club room, coworking space, yoga room, golf simulator, billiards room, bike room, conference room, dog wash and sauna.

Read the full article

City Has New Historic Preservation Leader

Milwaukee has a new leading voice for historic preservation.

The Milwaukee Preservation Alliance (MPA), the city’s most active advocacy group for preserving the built environment, announced it hired Emelia Rudd as its new executive director.

Rudd, a Wisconsin native, most recently worked as a project specialist with Bray Architects and previously worked at Kahler Slater and Quorum Architects. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of St. Thomas and a master’s degree in architecture with a certificate in historic preservation from UW-Milwaukee. She served as an intern with the Rethos (formerly the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota), the historic Ard Godfrey House in Minneapolis and the City of Milwaukee Historic Preservation Commission.

In her new role, she’ll appear regularly before the historic commission for which she interned in 2016 and 2017. Rudd made her first appearance this week, testifying in favor of the historic designation of the Lamers Block in Walker’s Point.

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Construction Starts on Century City Park Expansion

Construction is finally underway on a long-awaited expansion of Melvina Park, across the street from the Century City Business Park.

The revamped park, which will nearly quadruple in size, is expected to open this fall. It will include a multi-purpose field, dog exercise area, boardwalk, stage area and several green infrastructure features designed to capture stormwater runoff. The existing playground and basketball court will be replaced.

“This can’t be understated as being one of the most important developments here in this neighborhood,” said area Alderman Khalif Rainey at a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday. “This is where community is made… essentially what we are doing right here is developing community.”

City officials and neighbors began discussing the project privately in 2018 and publicly in June 2020, hoping for a 2021 completion. But that didn’t happen, nor did a plan to advance the project happen in 2022. Now, with additional funding secured, construction is moving forward on the $2.3 million park.

Read the full article

5 Milwaukee Projects Get Affordable Housing Funding

Five proposed affordable housing developments in Milwaukee secured their key funding source Thursday when the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) announced the winners of its annual housing funding round.

Each of the proposals will be awarded low-income housing tax credits. The income tax credits, commonly sold to institutional investors, provide a key source of equity in exchange for the developer setting aside specific units at federally-regulated, below-market rates for a period of at least 30 years. The credits are the most commonly-used affordable housing funding strategy in Wisconsin and several other states.

The five Milwaukee projects that received credits are the Vet Place Central expansion, Rule Enterprises‘ Greenfield Avenue Commons, Bear Development‘s 100 E. National Ave. project, the arts-and-technology infused Bronzeville Apartments and the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee‘s (HACM) redevelopment of Highland Gardens. All of those projects now have a financing commitment that allows the development teams to enter final design and pursue additional funding sources.

WHEDA awarded credits to 23 proposals that represent more than 1,500 new affordable housing units and placed 24 proposals on hold or declared the applications ineligible. In total, WHEDA awarded $32.4 million in credits.

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Meet Milwaukee’s Newest Historic Building

The Lamers Block building in Walker’s Point will soon receive official recognition: it’s a historic building worthy of preservation.

The two-story building at 830-832 S. 5th St. was built in 1883 in the High Victorian Italianate style. It’s located just south of W. National Ave.

Unlike many designation nominations, the Lamers Block building isn’t threatened with demolition.

It’s a “wonderfully intact” structure said Historic Preservation Commission staffer Tim Askin when the commission considered the nomination Monday. Sculptor Celine Farrell nominated the Cream City brick building after owning it for 52 years.

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MATC Will Use Vacant Lot For Training Program

A vacant, environmentally-contaminated lot at W. North Ave. and N. 30th St. would be cleaned up and repurposed as a training ground for a highly sought-after career under a new proposal from a broad array of community partners.

Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC) would repurpose much of the site, and a nearby property owned by We Energies, into a second location for its electrical power distribution line mechanic program.

The 30-credit technical diploma program, which runs annually from August through May, involves training students to repair electrical equipment, climb poles and drive heavy equipment.

“When they complete this program, they are essentially earning $70,000 per year,” said MATC vice president of college advancement and external communications Laura Bray to the Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee on Tuesday. She said with experience, they can earn more than $100,000.

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Historic Commission Creates Reprieve For Illegally Modified Homes

A new City of Milwaukee historic preservation certificate aims to end the often painful process where new homeowners are told they need to make thousands of dollars in repairs to improper modifications made by a prior owner or face fines for building code violations.

The “certificate of repose” would give new property owners relief, allowing them to keep the non-conforming modification until it wears out or is electively replaced.

“When your vinyl window fails at the end of its 10 to 15 years, that’s the end of your certificate of repose,” said Historic Preservation Commission staffer Tim Askin at Monday’s commission meeting. The replacement windows would need to be wood windows.

The issue applies to the approximately 2,000 locally-designated historic properties, modifications to them made without a permit and the complaint-based process that triggers enforcement.

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County Plans New Oak Creek Subdivision

Milwaukee County is planning to turn approximately 20 acres of vacant land in Oak Creek into new housing.

The county’s Department of Administrative Services (DAS) solicited consultants in April to assist with planning, design and construction documents for a new subdivision.

The land in question sits between E. Puetz Rd. and E. American Avenue and is bordered on its eastern edge by a Union Pacific rail line. Just to the west of the land sits two existing subdivisions along Annette Place and S. Chicago Court.

The land is made up of two parcels that came into the county’s possession through tax delinquency in 2011. The two parcels are to be combined into one site and subdivided into as many lots as possible. Under City of Oak Creek zoning code, a 20-acre site could yield approximately 80 to 100 lots of 8,000 to 10,000 feet each, according to DAS.

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Commission Okays Plan To Save Pabst Mansion Pavilion

A plan to reconstruct an addition to Milwaukee’s most famous house won a key approval Monday. The plan, which would take until 2033 to be completed, would save a piece of Milwaukee and World’s Fair history.

The nonprofit operator of The Pabst Mansion, 2000 W. Wisconsin Ave., secured approval from the Historic Preservation Commission to disassemble the enclosed pavilion attached to the 20,000-square-foot mansion.

“This is a rather unfortunate situation,” said commission staffer Tim Askin in reporting on the pavilion’s condition. The issues date back to the structure’s original design.

The pavilion was built as Pabst Brewing Company‘s booth at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, a World’s Fair made famous in modern times by The Devil in the White City book. It’s one of only a handful of structures remaining from the White City, much of which was designed by Daniel Burnham as a temporary campus.

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