Tuesday, February 5, 2013
While total project costs estimated by developer and independent consultant are nearly aligned, they are vastly different where they count — in the difference in cost of restoration of old buildings and the cost of new ones.
Always read the fine print. A study commissioned by the city to analyze a developer's projected costs for a residential project on the historic Eschweiler Campus has now twice been presented publicly, and certainly scrutinized in private. But the conclusion presented in the Springsted Report — agreeing that the costs of the project are “within the range of those provided by the Developer” — seems to conflict rather widely with the very numbers gathered to support that conclusion. Data appended to the Springsted Report say it should be $1.7 million cheaper to restore the Eschweilers than Mandel Group says it would be, a difference of nearly 15 percent. They also say that the proposed new construction would be $6.45 million, or 26 percent, …
Monday, February 4, 2013
City pushes change in the Innovation Campus TIF to allow public assistance for private parking, and shows that more than $12 million in parking support could be added to original $6.5 million in public roads and utilities — plus interest.
The public investment for infrastructure at UW-Milwaukee’s Innovation Campus could swell to $30 million, according to projections supplied by city officials to the Community Development Authority on Monday. The CDA swiftly approved an amendment to the tax increment financing (TIF) plan that would allow the allocation of funds to parking structures and surface parking for private developments on Innovation Campus. While only one such private project has been proposed — the 95,000-square-foot ABB Group building — projections for up to six additional private development sites on the County Grounds tract identify a total of $12,395,000 in support for parking stalls. ABB has already asked for $2 million for in-building parking. The TIF …
Sunday, February 3, 2013
Blot on the city's escutcheon will at last be erased with approval of final plan for Burleigh Triangle, but another much-debated measure – the right to keep chickens – is a far less sure thing.
When the Wauwatosa Common Council convenes Tuesday night, two loooooong-discussed propositions will finally move forward – or, perhaps, again be stopped in their tracks. In one case, approval is such a foregone conclusion the vote is really but a necessary formality. The council's nod will at last launch HSA Commercial Real Estate in its redevelopment of the Burleigh Triangle, something the city has been striving for over many years. Former Roundy's distribution center warehouses north of Burleigh Street and west of Highway 45 will become The Mayfair Collection retail center, including a Nordstrom Rack, Sak's Off Fifth, ULTA and Dick's Sporting Goods stores, among others. Restaurants are also being recruited for the development but none …
Thursday, January 31, 2013
First private developer on Innovation Campus wants TIF funds to pay for underground parking beneath building, and other developers to follow will likely follow suit.
The developer for the first private business project at UWM's Innovation Campus on the County Grounds is seeking $2 million in additional city assistance to place below-grade parking under the building. Zilber Ltd. and ABB Group, the company that will occupy the site, filed an application for tax incremental financing (TIF) assistance before meeting in a closed session Tuesday with administrators and elected officials to discuss the details of their proposal. City officials had signaled in a Common Council meeting a week before that Zilber was expected to ask for TIF assistance and that it would be to support structure parking — it just wasn't said how much. City Development Director Paulette Enders confirmed Thursday morning that Zilber …
Monday, January 28, 2013
With Eschweiler tract up in the air and UWM Innovation Campus project hanging in the balance, city reluctantly steps in to attempt to keep plan on track.
Would you, after agreeing to sell a property at a given price, agree to reduce that price when a broker for the buyer came back to you a couple of years later and said it might be difficult to make the next mortgage payment? And might you do so if, by chance, you had some long-term investment in the successful outcome of that sale, rather than just walking away from it? That was the difficult position a delegation from Wauwatosa found itself arguing Monday when it went before a Milwaukee County Board committee to suggest that UWM's difficulties in selling the Eschweiler Campus on the County Grounds might call for a reduction in the agreed-to selling price of the land. City Administrator Jim Archambo, Economic and Community Development …
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Innovation? Bah.... History? Bunk.... In this day and age, where to park your car appears still to be the overriding concern when it comes to getting down to business.
In a far-ranging discussion Tuesday night of the city's part in UWM's Innovation Campus, and in the related fate of the historic Eschweiler buildings, Wauwatosa's Common Council finally got the word on what's really driving this bus. That word is: Parking. As with so many urban development plans, the mundane problem of providing enough parking emerged on the County Grounds projects. But here, the matter is so complex that whether the Eschweilers are saved or demolished in a redevelopment plan, or even whether any redevelopment of their grounds can proceed at all, is tightly tied to how parking is handled on the rest of the UWM Real Estate Foundation's property. At the same time, providing public financing for private developers to have …
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Any delay in finishing the project will cost not just the area, not just the region, but the whole state in economic development and other benefits, say key legislator and commercial interests.
State Rep. Dale Kooyenga lives in north Brookfield, well away from the direct impact of reconstruction work on the Zoo Interchange. But he knows that doesn't mean he won't feel it — or that he doesn't see the need for it. "My world is from the west boundary of Madison to an east boundary of Lake Michigan in downtown Milwaukee," he said in an interview. "In its present condition, I avoid the Zoo Interchange when I can. To go to Milwaukee, I take Capitol Drive over to Fond du Lac and shoot downtown." Kooyenga's 14th District seat straddles the Brookfield-Wauwatosa line and much of the project area. But beyond his personal interest, Kooyenga also knows that the Zoo Interchange is the critical hub of transportation and therefore commerce for …
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Long-awaited private-sector investment promises 350 jobs on County Grounds site in Wauwatosa from major power technology firm.
The UWM Real Estate Foundation announced Tuesday night that ABB Inc. and Zilber Property Group have entered into a letter of intent to develop a three-story office building at UWM's Innovation Park campus on Wauwatosa's County Grounds. The proposed 95,000 square-foot building is intended to house ABB’s businesses operating in Southeast Wisconsin. This office represents a total of 350 jobs, which includes over 100 engineers and scientists. The site is located in the western portion of Innovation Campus, situated east of Hwy. 45 between Watertown Plank Road and Swan Boulevard. This is the first private development at Innovation Park. The Innovation Park campus is a public-private partnership designed to provide industry and academia with a …
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Huge reconstruction project was expected to take at least six years by design, and now Wauwatosa looks at the prospect of additional years because of budget shortfalls.
- Jim Price
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
In the best of all possible scenarios, Wauwatosa is looking toward six years of road construction that will make this year's widespread street, sewer and utility work look like a picnic. Detours and delays involved in the Mayfair Road reconstruction, the Meinecke Avenue Sewer Project and other public works will pale in comparison to the impact of the upcoming Zoo Interchange Project, once it begins in earnest in 2013. But that massive project is something the city and its business community have actually sought for many years — modernization of the busiest freeway interchange in the state. Now, though, after years of planning and a completed design, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and Gov. Scott Walker say there simply isn't …
Sunday, November 4, 2012
The popular grocer will kick off with a "lei cutting," its unique twist on the traditional ribbon-cutting, before the doors open at 8 a.m.
Break out those Hawaiian shirts. The long-awaited opening of the second Trader Joe's grocer in the Milwaukee area — and third statewide — is happening in mere hours. At 7:50 a.m. Monday, the new Brookfield store at 12665 W. Bluemound Rd. will hold a "lei cutting" with Brookfield Mayor Steve Ponto and Hawaiian-shirt-clad store employees, including Captain Jeff Clark (TJ's calls its managers "captains"). The store opens its doors 10 minutes later and will be open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. The store's phone number is (262) 784-4806. The popular Trader Joe's business — known for its almost cult-like following, fun and festive atmosphere and private label specialty products and wines such as "Two-Buck Chucks" — was a big "get" …