Alderman says UWM’s new developments will boost Walker’s Point

    Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood will receive a considerable boost when the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee develops two locations for its new School of Freshwater Sciences on the city’s near south side.
    UWM will build a $50 million addition to its existing Great Lakes Water Institute at 600 E. Greenfield Ave. with part of the $240 million bonds UWM received from the state last year. The 85,000-square-foot, four-story addition will provide advanced laboratories and classroom and collaboration space.
    In addition, the UWM Real Estate Foundation and the Milwaukee Water Council will seek funding to develop a site at the Reed Street Yards near South Third Street and Pittsburgh Avenue, where the school plans to construct a public-private facility that will house academic applied research labs, conference space for businesses, a business accelerator and the Water Council’s offices.
    Alderman Jim Witkowiak, who represents the Walker’s Point neighborhood, said, “For the Walker’s Point area, it’s absolutely huge. Even though they are split into two different sites, I’m pleased it is in our neighborhood. I think it makes everyone happy. This also will open up development of the Reed Street Yards. We were looking for a catalytic project to go into there and this will provide that.”
    City officials want to attract water technology businesses to the Reed Street Yards area, which is just south of the Harley-Davidson Museum and is near downtown Milwaukee.
    The expansion of the Great Lakes Water Institute at 600 E. Greenfield Ave. could help attract development to vacant parcels at South First Street and Greenfield Avenue, which is next to Rockwell Automation Inc.’s corporate headquarters, Witkowiak said.
    “I think that corner will become a lot more viable now that this is happening,” Witkowiak said. “Hopefully the land around that area will become more attractive for development.”
    “Working as a whole community is the best way to launch this vital new graduate-level school,” said UWM chancellor Carlos Santiago. “It gives us the unity and impact necessary to attract new business and creative minds to Milwaukee, while building a strong foundation for our economic future as a freshwater center.”
    Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said the city plans to transform Greenfield Avenue from the Harbor to South First Street into a “beautiful boulevard” by rebuilding a railroad underpass and building a “visual barrier” to block the view of a coal pile located south of the site.
    “Strong academic institutions are valuable ingredients in our city’s job creation efforts,” Mayor Tom Barrett said. “With Milwaukee’s position as a center of water technology, the UWM School of Freshwater Sciences plays a particularly important role in growing that segment of our economy. I am very happy to see the school’s bold expansion plans advancing.”
    “The business-research location will be a signature facility that will serve as a gateway for water-related industries while co-existing with technological research,” said Dean Amhaus, executive director of the Milwaukee Water Council. “Creating a water research campus is a perfect launch pad for our region’s continued growth as a world water technology leader.”
    Milwaukee already is recognized by the United Nations as a freshwater hub of research and business, according to Rich Meeusen, the chief executive officer of Badger Meter Inc. and co-chair of the Water Council, who appeared at today’s unveiling of the UWM plans at Wisconsin Energy Corp. headquarters by remote video.
    – BizTimes Milwaukee

    Sign up for BizTimes Daily Alerts

    Stay up-to-date on the people, companies and issues that impact business in Milwaukee and Southeast Wisconsin

    No posts to display