Milwaukee-based Bachman Furniture Gallery has found a new location for its furniture showroom: an historic building in the Menomonee Valley’s new home decor and design district.
The retailer has purchased a 60,000-square-foot portion of the former American Radiator Company building, a 94-year-old structure at 1741 W. St. Paul Avenue, with plans to open a store there before the end of the year.
The announcement comes as the 98-year-old business, now in its third generation of family ownership, liquidates and closes its Capitol Drive location on the city’s west side, which has housed the store since 1958.
“Our business is design,” owner Joe Bachman said in a statement. “I have never really felt like we are a big box type of furniture store.”
With a larger complimentary custom design center and expanded shop-at-home services, the new location will better cater to the store’s growing customer base, Bachman said. A parking lot and its close proximity to I-94 puts the store in a more convenient location.
Renovations to the building are expected to be complete by late 2018. Milwaukee-based LCM Funds Real Estate, which was the seller in the deal, said it plans to find a complementary business for an adjacent building.
LCM bought the building in 2014 for $422,000. It has an assessed value of $750,000, according to city records. The sale price for the space that was sold to the Bachman Furniture Gallery owners was not immediately disclosed.
West St. Paul Avenue has recently attracted several other retailers including BC Lighting, Brass Light Gallery, Guardian Fine Art Services, House of Stone, ProStar Surfaces, and Riverview Antiques. The street was recently designated as the Menomonee Valley’s new home decor and design district.
“Bachman’s move to St. Paul Avenue firmly establishes the district as a design destination, the best place in our region for lighting, countertops, flooring, antiques, and now fine furniture,” said Corey Zetts, executive director of Menomonee Valley Partners.
Bachman’s building is one of 22 industrial buildings between 11th and 21st streets that are part of the St. Paul Avenue Industrial Historic District. The district, which was added to state’s register of historic places last year by the Wisconsin Historical Society, has been a recent development focus of Menomonee Valley Partners and the city of Milwaukee.
Bachman Furniture was first established in 1920 by Joseph Bachman, an immigrant from Russia. He and his son, Howard, in 1958 moved the store from its previous location at North 35th Street and West Fond du Lac Avenue to its current location at 6800 W. Capitol Drive, in Milwaukee’s Capitol Heights neighborhood.