Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:22 pm
Stores poised to open in former Capitol Court
About half of the 65,000 square feet of leasable space at Midtown Center in Milwaukee is under contract, according to Peter Glaser of The Polacheck Company Inc.’s Retail Properties Group.
The space, adjacent to a 155,000-square-foot Wal-mart store on the site of what had been Capitol Court, will be occupied by a mix of local and national retailers. Of the 65,000 square feet of space available in the first phase of the project, 7,000 square feet will consist of office space, Glaser said.
The $57 million Midtown Center redevelopment effort by Boulder Venture has already changed the landscape of the Milwaukee neighborhood west of Fond du Lac Avenue and north of Capitol Drive by reintroducing tree-lined city streets and sidewalks into what had been a monolithic block of parking lots and concrete structures.
Shortly after the doors of the Wal-mart location opened, curious pedestrians were meandering down the newly constructed Hope Avenue, which extends past the megaretailer’s front door and around the corner onto North 55th Street and North 60th Street.
Construction crews from as far away as Michigan worked on the buildout of some of the leased properties.
"We saw a big increase in people coming by after Wal-mart opened," said Ed Guida of Racine-based Horizon Retail Construction, as his crew worked on the buildout of a Payless ShoeSource location at Midtown Center.
The immediate foot traffic is not a surprise to Marcia Stenman, Polacheck senior vice president of property management.
"The base for this shopping center is right outside of their front door," Stenman said. "There is instant traffic, and the loyalties are going to run very deep."
Apart from Payless, other shoe stores already are leasing space at Midtown, including Foot Locker.
Other tenants include Duncan, S.C.-based One Price Clothing Stores, Inc.
"Soft goods is going to be big on this property," Stenman said. "And there is an awful lot of interest from shoe vendors. That is typical at strip centers."
According to Glaser, the stores may start to open as early as September.
"This is the first of three phases," Glaser said. "The next phase will include shop space, another 25,000-square-foot anchor and three restaurant outlots."
Construction of a second phase could be finished by the fall of next year, Glaser said.
Aug. 30, 2002 Small Business Times, Milwaukee