Last updated on May 31st, 2022 at 11:24 pm
Major progress was made in 2004 on the 1,500-acre Pabst Farms development at Highway 67 and I-94 in Oconomowoc and the Town of Summit, and additional phases of the project will be under construction this year.
Construction is under way of the first retail portion of Pabst Farms, the four-building, 118,323-square-foot Market Place at Pabst Farms located northeast of Highway 67 and Pabst Farms Boulevard. The Market Place will provide day-to-day convenience retail services to area residences. It will be anchored by a 66,292-square-foot Pick ‘n Save grocery store. Mid-America Real Estate Group is the real estate brokerage firm for Pabst Farms that is working to sign tenants for the remaining 52,031 square feet of space.
The Market Place, which is part of the Shops at Pabst Farms, also is seeking a video store, a card and gift store, a sandwich shop, a pizza restaurant, a hair salon and three other retailers for 20,160 square feet of space attached to the Pick ‘n Save.
The development is seeking a fast-casual restaurant, an optical center, a salon, a mail and packaging center, a financial institution, an electronics store, a coffee shop and another retailer for a 17,160-square-foot building. They are also seeking a cellular phone tenant and another retailer for a 6,287-square-foot building and a restaurant for an 8,424-square-foot building.
Pabst Farms executives said they have received some letters of intent for retail tenants at the Market Place, and the names of the other stores at the shopping center will be announced soon.
The Pick ‘n Save store is expected to open in August or September, and the rest of the Market Place stores will open shortly thereafter.
“At least 90 percent (of the Market Place) should be occupied by Thanksgiving,” said William Niemann, executive vice president of Pabst Farms Development LLC.
The entire $1 billion Pabst Farms development will take about 15 more years to be built out completely, Niemann said. Once completed, Pabst Farms will be a combination of office buildings, light industrial facilities, retail stores, health care facilities and about 1,500 homes, including single-family homes and condominiums.
“You can live, work and play here all within the Pabst Farms master-planned community,” said Bronson Haase, president of Pabst Farms Equity Ventures LLC.
The 200-acre Commerce Centre at Pabst Farms, located southwest of I-94 and Highway 67, has already attracted a 1.1 million-square-foot Roundy’s Inc. distribution center, an 81,000-square-foot headquarters for Ace Precision and a $4.2 million, 38,000-square-foot Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealership.
Several 3- to 12-acre lots are still available in the Commerce Centre for additional businesses. Pabst Farms is primarily trying to attract light industrial firms to the Commerce Centre.
Development could begin this year of the Health and Wellness Campus at Pabst Farms, a 184-acre area located southeast of I-94 and Highway 67. A proposed $85 million Aurora Health Care hospital, combined with a to-be-relocated Wilkinson Clinic, would be developed on 53 acres at the northwest corner of the health and wellness campus. Critics of the hospital project say it is unnecessary and will lead to higher health care costs in the area. However, the 88-bed, 360,000-square-foot hospital and 100,000-square-foot clinic could be approved by the Waukesha County Board this spring, and if it is, construction could begin later this year, Haase said.
Once construction begins on the hospital, Pabst Farms executives expect more development to follow in the health and wellness campus. Medical office buildings, a nursing home, an assisted living center, a spa and a child care center could be attracted to the health and wellness campus, Pabst Farms executives say.
The Village Square at Pabst Farms area in the middle of the sprawling development is expected to attract a mixture of retail, office and residential development. Pabst Farms plans to move its headquarters from a home in the development into a new 50,000- to 70,000-square-foot office building in the Village Square area.
About 150 to 180 condominiums also will be built in the Village Square area. Construction of the condos could begin next year, Pabst Farms executives said.
Other commercial development at Pabst Farms is a few years away from beginning construction.
Pabst Farms plans to attract 700,000 to 1 million square feet of upscale stores, restaurants and entertainment venues in the Town Centre at Pabst Farms, which will be at the northeast corner of I-94 and Highway 67. Development of the Town Centre is expected to begin in 2007 or 2008. Pabst Farms executives hope to make the Town Centre a regional retail destination drawing shoppers to upscale national retail chain stores, including several that do not have a presence in the state yet.
Pabst Farms executives have attended the last two annual retail industry conventions in Las Vegas and have toured at least 12 lifestyle centers across the nation to research how to build a successful upscale shopping center, Niemann said.
“We’re happy to report that Pabst Farms is on the national map,” he said. “We continue to do our due diligence to bring the best shopping experience to the people of Wisconsin. We’re taking our time to plan it correctly.”
The key to attracting both retailers and shoppers to the Town Centre will be to create an impressive destination, Haase said.
“It’s going to be a push to get (upscale retailers) here, but we think we’re going to do it,” Haase said.
The retailers in Pabst Farms will be selected carefully. A movie theater could be built in the Town Centre, and Pabst Farms executives expect to attract two hotels. Some car dealers have expressed interest in opening up dealerships in the development, but they have been turned down, Haase said.
Pabst Farms plans to use the high-tech infrastructure that is a major amenity in the development to attract businesses to the 200-acre Business Tech Core, which is located northwest of Sawyer Road and I-94. Development there is expected to begin in 2006, Pabst Farms executives said.
“We want to have companies here that require high-tech to function,” he said. “If you need that kind of technology, this is where you need to be.”
Homes and businesses in Pabst Farms will be connected to the most up-to-date broadband telecom infrastructure through fiber optics. The broadband network for Pabst Farms will be able to provide nearly limitless bandwidth for voice, video and data services, including wireless high-speed Internet access, for homeowners and businesses, Haase said. The high-tech infrastructure has a back-up system that makes sure businesses in Pabst Farms will never lose their high-speed Internet service, he said. SBC is providing the high-tech telecommunications services for Pabst Farms.
In addition, Pabst Farms executives are involved in ongoing discussions with University of Wisconsin-Madison officials about establishing a research park at Pabst Farms, similar to the University Research Park on the west side of Madison, Haase said.
Residential development at Pabst Farms began in 2003 and will continue this year. All 170 lots in the East Lake Village portion of Pabst Farms have been purchased or reserved by builders. Homes have either been built or are under construction at about 60 to 70 percent of those lots, Niemann said. Each lot is one-third of an acre, and the home and lot packages cost between $375,000 and $1 million.
Construction is expected to begin this year on the homes in the Lake County Village portion of Pabst Farms. The 200-acre Lake Country Village will have 200 homes, each built on a half-acre lot. Home and lot packages will cost about $500,000 to $750,000.
The Interlaken Village portion of Pabst Farms is located on 56 acres east of Sawyer Road. There, 26 homes will be built on one-acre lots. Construction in Interlaken Village is expected to begin near the end of this year. The home and lot packages in Interlaken Village will cost $1 million and up.
Pabst Farms also features the new Summit Elementary School and the $12 million, 115,000-square-foot YMCA at Pabst Farms, both of which opened in 2003.
Size: 1,500 acres
Project: $1 billion of residential, retail, office, industrial and medical development
Location: Highway 67 and Interstate 94 in Oconomowoc and the Town of Summit
Expected completion: 2020
February 4, 2005, Small Business Times, Milwaukee, WI