Demolition of tannery to begin soon

Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:45 pm

Milwaukee-based Mandel Group Inc. is preparing to begin major demolition of the former Pfister & Vogel tannery complex, located along the east side of the Milwaukee River, just north of the Park East Freeway corridor in downtown Milwaukee.

The tannery complex will be demolished to make way for the North End, a $175 million development of several buildings by Mandel Group that will have a total of 88 apartments, 395 condominiums and 25,000 to 30,000 square feet of retail space. Most of the retail space will face Water Street.

Mandel Group has scheduled a "virtual demolition" ceremony to celebrate the start of the demolition work and mark the launch of the North End project. The ceremony will be held on Thursday, June 14, at 3:30 p.m. at 1531 N. Water St., at the corner of Water and Pleasant streets.

The "virtual demolition" will consist of a projected image of the tannery complex being torn down and replaced with a rendering of the North End, said Dick Lincoln, senior vice president of Mandel Group.

Crews will start tearing down the actual buildings shortly after June 14, Lincoln said.

"It’s really exciting to really be working on the project," he said. "We’ve been working on it for a number of years."

Crews have been working for months to remove asbestos, lead paint, barrels of chemicals, underground storage tanks and other contaminants from the former tannery complex.

The demolition of the complex should be complete in mid to late September, Lincoln said. Then construction of the North End will begin. The first residents are expected to move into the North End in early 2009, and the entire project is expected to be built out in four to six years.

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