Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 05:05 pm
For nearly a decade, the Village of Kewaskum has had a 34-acre parcel of vacant land along Highway 45 serving as a reminder of the Great Recession.
Kraig Sadownikow, manager of American Construction Services, in West Bend, has purchased the bank-owned parcel and hopes to begin commercial development on the property.
“Kraig has been working on this deal for over a year and I can’t tell you how impressed I am with his willingness to stick it out,” said Matt Heiser, village administrator.
The village created a tax incremental financing district to drive construction of the area in 2005. But by 2008, all construction was halted and the TIF has been dormant since.
Sadownikow, who is also the mayor of West Bend, and has family ties to Kewaskum, had been watching this from afar. When he was approached by community members about the project, he decided the time was right to get involved.
“At American Companies, we are always looking to make a positive impact on the communities we work in and partner with,” Sadownikow said.
Heiser said he would love to see a commercial tenant come in that would create jobs for the area. The land is zoned for light industrial and commercial.
“Honestly at this point, I would be happy with anything,” Heiser said. “Right now (Sadownikow) doesn’t have any potential buyers because this project has taken so long. But this is a public, private partnership that will hopefully spur some growth.”
The village has agreed to spend $230,000 on infrastructure. In return, Sadownikow has committed to building $2 million worth of improvements by 2019 and another $2 million worth of improvements by 2021.
About 20 acres of the 34 acres are buildable, Sadownikow said. He has been talking to potential tenants and said now that the deal has closed, talks can get more serious.
“The property in Kewaskum has been on hold for many years,” he said. “We are confident a renewed economy coupled with fully-improved lots that include direct access to Hwy 45 will prove to be a successful venture for our firm, the Village, well as new users of the property.”