CRE Spotlight: Momentum continues in Walker’s Point

Construction for yet another project in the Walker’s Point/Fifth Ward area, located south of Milwaukee’s dramatically re-developed Historic Third Ward, is nearing completion.

A group of investors led by Ann Pieper Eisenbrown, president and founder of Pieper Properties Inc., is progressing on the redevelopment of the former Allen D. Everitt Knitting Co. building at 234 W. Florida St.

Pieper’s group, 234 Florida LLC, is redeveloping the seven-story 84,500-square-foot building into a mixed-use commercial building with 71,000 square feet of office space and 13,500 square feet of retail space.

The building’s first tenant recently moved in. Bergen, Norway-based NordicNeuroLab Inc.’s U.S. office is now occupying 625 square feet of space in the building.

Pieper’s firm will move from its 900-sqaure-foot Third Ward location at 231 E. Buffalo St. to occupy 1,536 square feet of space in the 234 W. Florida St. building.

Pieper said her group is targeting small office tenants for the building. About 20 percent of the office space is designated as very small or prebuilt space where tenants can lease 250 to 600 square feet of space for one year. The building also has a common conference room that can be shared by tenants.

“The building subdivides very well to serve 1,500- to 3,000-square-foot users without becoming physically unattractive,” she said. “Eighty percent of all U.S. businesses employ 20 people or less. They need attractive and reasonably priced space in which to conduct their businesses, and attract and retain human capital.”

The redevelopment project includes the complete gutting and renovation of the 116-year-old building. Brick and wood timbers were sandblasted and the exterior received a chemical cleaning and tuck-point work. New mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems were added, as were elevators and underground and surface parking areas.

“The entire core and shell is complete with the exception of some aesthetic details,” Pieper said. “The first and second floor common areas are completely built out. The brokers have not been actively showing the building since we need to complete some of the finishes.”

The building also has a balcony on the north side of the sixth floor and outdoor rooftop space adjacent to the seventh-floor penthouse. A wall of windows has been installed on the east side. “We are especially excited about the window wall,” Pieper said. “It is quite eye-catching and makes the building distinctive.”

The group is pursuing the LEED silver certification for the building.

The redevelopment of the 234 W. Florida St. building is just one of several developers that have been completed recently, or are under construction, in the Walker’s Point/Fifth Ward neighborhood.

A former warehouse at 500 W. Florida St. has been transformed into the 102-room Iron Horse Hotel.

Milwaukee-based Lighthouse Development Company is redeveloping the six-acre, former Transpak Corp. property located south of Pittsburgh Avenue between Barclay and South Water Street. The project includes restoration of an 86-year-old, five-story building at 235 E. Pittsburgh Ave., and adding a four-story addition, to create a 55-unit apartment building. In addition, Lighthouse is restoring a 73-year-old, four-story building at the corner of Pittsburgh and Barclay into 35,000 square feet of office space and 10,000 square feet of retail space. Fullhouse Media will move from the Third Ward into 24,000 square feet of space in that building. A four-story addition with 40 apartments will be building onto the building, along Barclay.

Architecture firm Vetter Denk built a four-story 25,000-square-foot office building at 161 S. First St. and is trying to attract tenants to the nearby historic buildings at 157 S. First St. and 161 S. First St.

The 152 First Place on the River condominium development at 106 W. Seeboth St. was placed into receivership earlier this year, but Milwaukee-based Mandel Group Inc. has taken the project over to complete it.

A group of investors are redeveloping the 60,000-square-foot industrial building at 544 S. First St. into primarily an office building. First Edge Solutions moved from the Third Ward into 20,000 square feet of space in the building and IndependenceFirst will move into the building from The Tannery Complex at 600 W. Virginia St.

The redevelopment of the building at 234 W. Florida St. adds to the growing redevelopment momentum in the Walker’s Point/Fifth Ward area.

“This building has great bones and a location convenient to other businesses and a variety of housing, as well as restaurants and retail,” Pieper said. “The Menomonee Valley and the Third Ward have developed beautifully, and the Fifth Ward will most likely be the next neighborhood to redevelop. We are tremendously excited about the neighborhood and its potential to blossom. We also own some land parcels in the immediate vicinity of 234 W. Florida St. for future development.”


St. John Properties Inc. plans to build a 30,000-square-foot, multi-tenant office building on a vacant 2.5-acre site at 1025 Richards Road.

A new Culver’s restaurant has been proposed for a property owned by Tim Karbler at 1200 Highway 83. The property needs to be re-zoned, but that would be inconsistent with the village’s comprehensive plan said Village Administrator Wally Thiel. Prairie du Sac-based Culver Franchising System Inc. now has 370 locations in the U.S.


Regency Builders Inc. plans to build a 29,000-square-foot, multi-tenant office building on a vacant 2.26 acre site at 1215 George Towne Dr. The two-story building would also have an additional exposed lower level on the north side.

Katie Guindon, the owner of Design Exchange, a home décor store, plans to purchase a church building at 169-175 Main Street in downtown Pewaukee and plans to move her store to the building from its current location at Highway 164 and Capitol Drive.


Waukesha-based MRED-Cummings Commercial Development Corp. plans to build a 14,550-square-foot Walgreens store at the southeast corner of Washington Avenue and Zeunert Street. A former Russ Darrow dealership building on the site will be demolished. The Walgreens store will occupy about 1.8 acres of the 2.8-acre site and the remaining 1 acre site will be for future development. The new store would replace the existing Walgreens store at W61 N294 Washington Ave.


Big Bend-based Boschi & Associates plans to build a 12,000-square-foot retail building at 19770 W. Bluemound Road, that will be occupied by a Rogan’s shoe store. Racine-based Rogan Shoes Inc. is a chain of 31 shoe stores. Oconomowoc-based MSI General Corp. will design and build the store.


Dr. Kenneth Kerwin, owner of Kerwin Chiropractic Sports & Family Health, plans to build a 5,000-square-foot office building at 4706 S. 81st St. A vacant home on the two-thirds of an acre property. Kerwin will move his business to the new building from 6790 Layton Ave.

F&F Tire World plans to close its Greendale shop at 5350 S. 76th St. and move it to the former National Tire & Battery building at 7425 W. Holmes Ave. in Greenfield.

Imprex, a manufacturer of vaccum pressure impregnation systems and technology, located at 3260 S. 108th St., plans to demolish a portion of the former Evans Mattress building at 3350 S. 108th St., and reuse about 30,000 square feet of the building for storage and manufacturing operations.


InterOcean Coffee Company LLC plans to open a Dunkin Donuts restaurant at 5336 N. Port Washington Road.


A Jimmy John’s sandwich shop will occupy a 1,800-square-foot retail space in the State and Main building, located at the corner of State and Main streets in downtown Racine, developed by Madison-based Gorman & Co.

CREcommercial real estate Transactions


Grubb & Ellis|Apex Commercial

B.C. Ziegler renewed its lease of 14,111 square feet of office space at 250 E. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee, from East Milwaukee Operating Associates LLC.

Americans for Prosperity Foundation leased 1,244 square feet of office space in West Allis Center at 1126 S. 70th St., West Allis, from 1126 West Allis Operating Associates LP.

Evolution Retirement Services Inc. leased 1,670 square feet of office space at 933 N. Mayfair Road, Wauwatosa, from 933 N. Mayfair Road Limited Partnership.

Inland Companies

Roadrunner Transportation Systems leased 23,000 square feet of industrial space at 5171 Pennsylvania Ave. in Cudahy. 

Tree of Life leased 41,172 square feet of industrial space at 8133 N. Granville Woods in Milwaukee. 

Hallman Lindsay Paints leased 10,649 square feet of industrial space at 2855 S. 106th St., New Berlin.

Southern Lakes Spine Center leased 4,000 square feet of retail space at the Helsan Retail Center located at 3010 Helsan Dr., Richfield.

Judson & Associates

Hammer’s Trucking Unlimited LLC leased 1,920 square feet of space at W1332 Elmwood Ave., Ixonia, from Outback Storage and Investments LLC.

Home Star Inc. leased 2,700 square feet of space at 111 E. Wilmont Dr., Unit E, Waukesha, from Kirsch Properties Inc.

Product Miniature Inc. leased 30,000 square feet of space at 340 Maple Ave., Hartland, from Roadster LLC.

Wolf Pool & Spa leased 7,580 square feet of space at 1725 Dolphin Dr., Waukesha, from Dolphin Drive Investors LLC.

Brookfield Auto Parts Inc. leased 3,600 square feet of space at 402 Travis Lane, Unit 67, Waukesha, from Waucom Partners LLC.

NAI MLG Commercial

Milwaukee T-Shirt Vendors Inc. leased 15,294 square feet of space in Hales Corners Plaza at 5301-21 S. 108th St., Hales Corners, from MLG Capital – Hales Corners.


Rodney L. Cubbie Attorney at Law leased 1,093 square feet of office space in the Forum Building at 3333 N. Mayfair Road, Wauwatosa, from First Commercial Bank.

Kolb + Company leased 12,708 square feet of office space at The Gateway, 13400 Bishops Lane, Brookfield, from WILC-Gateway LLC.


Colliers Barry

DBS Gateway LLC purchased the 7,400-square-foot industrial building in the Gateway West Business Park at 21675 Gateway Road in Brookfield from Gosiger Inc. DBS Gateway is a retail contractor and will renovate the property, making it its new corporate headquarters.

Dickman Company

Murphy Real Estate LLC purchased 45,000 square feet of industrial space at 7221 S. 10th St., Oak Creek, from K.A.L. Limited Partnership.

Inland Companies

Design 2 Construct purchased 1.25 acres of land located on the 8900 Block of N. 60th Street in Brown Deer for $450,000. 

Leo Otten Properties purchased the 17,000-square-foot industrial building at 7259 Sleepy Hollow Road in Barton for $850,000.

MCS Investment Properties, LLC purchased the 8,000-square-foot industrial building at W146 N5808 Enterprise Ave. in Menomonee Falls for $610,000.

Judson & Associates

Behrend Property LLC purchased 15,000 square feet of space at 104 Capitol Dr., Hartland, from Eye Com.

Louis Gral Investment Real Estate

Millennium Offices LLC purchased a 4,000-square-foot office building at 11063 W. Bluemound Road, Wauwatosa, from Mustus Real Estate Group LLC.

NAI MLG Commercial

Velcheck & Finger Roof Consulting & Services purchased a 37,000-square-foot multi-tenant building at W231 N2844 Roundy’s Circle East, Pewaukee, from JMC Properties LLC for $2.6 million.

Ogden & Company

Mark Saigh and Mara Suchy recently purchased the three-story, 8,347-square-foot John Kunitzky building at 1673-77 N. Farwell Ave., Milwaukee, from The estate of Holmes Simpson for $750,000.

New construction

Waukesha-based Gerald Nell Inc. was selected by Hydrite Chemical Company to design and build new offices and laboratory space in the plant at 7303 W. Bradley Road, Milwaukee.

Wauwatosa-based Selzer-Ornst Construction Co. is building a parking structure for the Ambassador Hotel in Milwaukee. Selzer-Ornst also recently completed the buildout of the Friends of Housing corporate offices in downtown Milwaukee. Selzer-Ornst also recently completed the renovation and expansion of International Autos in West Allis. The Mercedes-Benz and BMW dealerships were renovated and expanded and the former Infiniti building was transformed into a new MINI dealership.

Oconomowoc-based MSI General Corp. was selected by Premier Aluminum of Racine to design and build a 50,200-square-foot addition to its 40,000-square-foot facility at 3633 S. Memorial Dr., Racine.

Waukesha-based Campbell Construction was selected by Virchow Krause to renovate and expand its 10,542-square-foot office space in the Honey Creek Business Park in Milwaukee.

Brookfield-based One Source Construction Corp. recently completed the 14,373-square-foot Pilgrim Spring Marketplace strip mall building at the northeast corner of Pilgrim Road and Silver Spring Drive in Menomonee Falls. One Source also recently completed the interior construction of Hand and Stone Message, a 2,600-square-foot tenant improvement at N56 W15560 Silver Spring Dr., Menomonee Falls.

Janesville-based J.P. Cullen & Sons Inc. was hired to do a $2.5 million renovation project for the fourth and sixth floors of St. Francis Hospital in Milwaukee.

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