Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

East Side Tower Gets Final Approval

New Land proposal for 25-story building wins unanimous Common Council vote.

By - May 31st, 2023 01:45 pm
Looking east at proposed apartment tower, 1490 N. Farwell Ave. Rendering by Korb + Associates Architects.

Looking east at proposed apartment tower, 1490 N. Farwell Ave. Rendering by Korb + Associates Architects.

The City of Milwaukee has done its part to enable the development of a 25-story, high-end apartment tower in the Lower East Side neighborhood.

On Wednesday morning, The Common Council unanimously approved a zoning change to enable New Land Enterprises to develop the 318-unit building on a surface parking lot at the corner of N. Farwell Ave. and E. Curtis Pl.

Area Alderman Jonathan Brostoff acknowledged that his constituents have not universally endorsed the proposal, but said it was a net positive for the community and would grow the city’s tax base.

“Anytime we can transform surface-level parking lots to housing that’s going to save libraries and other services, it’s a pretty cool thing. I appreciate all of the neighbors that brought their concerns to me, but, on balance, this is a big win for Milwaukee,” said Brostoff.

An L-shaped tower with lake views would rise from an eight-story base. The apartments are intended to compete with those in other new, high-end buildings. An outdoor pool and large deck would be included in the building, atop the parking podium. Other planned amenities include a large club room, golf simulator, coworking space and fitness center.

Developer Tim Gokhman, speaking to the Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee last week, said the development would have “condo-grade” finishes.

Rental rates, consistent with other new, high-end buildings, are expected to be approximately $3 per square feet. A 1,000-square-foot unit would cost $3,000 per month.

The building would compete with other high-rise towers, including 7Seventy7Ascent333 N. Water St.The Couture and the planned 1550 tower, located a block east.

The parking lot has long served the now-shuttered Renaissance Place event center at 1451 N. Prospect Ave. and the adjacent Mexican Consulate, 1443 N. Prospect Ave.

The 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 residents of its proposed building could use.

The site-specific zoning plan requires a minimum of 372 spaces in an eight-level parking structure, with at least 18 dedicated spaces for the Mexican Consulate employees. But the proposal allows for up to 93 spaces to be added, by increasing the number of floors, to serve the event venue. New Land could also remove a floor if it strikes a lease agreement for other nearby spaces. The company must maintain a ratio of one parking space per apartment unit and a minimum of 40 spaces for Renaissance Place.

A third-party traffic analysis said the street network could accommodate the increased traffic.

In February, an affiliate of New Land paid $3.4 million for the properties. The 20,000-square-foot Renaissance Place building was constructed in 1907 as a home for the First Church of Christ, Scientist. The consulate building was constructed in 1950 as a school for the former church.

Mayor Cavalier Johnson must still sign the council file, but his signature is seen as a formality given the Department of City Development‘s support of the project.

Korb + Associates Architects is designing the new building.

For more on the proposal, see our earlier coverage.

April Renderings

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.

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Related Legislation: File 221431

One thought on “Eyes on Milwaukee: East Side Tower Gets Final Approval”

  1. tornado75 says:

    oh good, another high end apartment building. i find myself in a strange position. i love nyc and its sky scrapers but in milwaukee on farwell 25 stories, boo hiss.

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