Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 10:55 am
The cost of the major renovation project planned for the Milwaukee Athletic Club in downtown Milwaukee is now approaching $70 million as project developers Josh Jeffers and Tony Janowiec are targeting a June 2020 completion– in time for the 2020 Democratic National Convention.
In a letter sent to the club’s members, Jeffers provided updates on the timeline, financing and purpose of the project, which will include a “gut-rehabilitation” of the 100-year-old building, replacing much of its interior infrastructure, converting its eighth and ninth floor meeting rooms to hotel rooms and updating the club’s amenities.
The entire ground floor of the building will be totally rebuilt with new restaurants and retail spaces.
The project’s nearly $70 million total budget has climbed since October when developers estimated the project to cost $57 million. The project cost was estimated at $30 million when the project was first announced in November 2017.
The developers plan to purchase the building from the MAC and expect to close on the property on April 18, begin construction that month and complete the project in June of 2020, in time for the DNC in July. The MAC will have 96 hotel rooms, when the project is complete.
In addition to Jeffers’ firm, J. Jeffers & Co., and Janowiec’s firm, Interstate Partners, the building’s new ownership group will include Denver-based Sage Hospitality Group. Sage owns and operates numerous hotels in the U.S. and also has a restaurant affiliate company. Jeffers, Interstate and Sage will constitute the core development/ownership/operations team for the rehabilitated MAC.
“We have had this building under contract with the MAC for over a year,” Jeffers said in the letter. “It has taken us that long to work through approvals – historic tax credit approvals, state and local code compliance approvals, and many, many, many approvals from our capital partners.”
Jeffers said the project is being backed by seven capital partners, in addition to his firm, Interstate and Sage.
Since January, the MAC has temporarily relocated its athletic, social, and food and beverage programs and services a block-and-a-half west to 735 N. Water St. The MAC has partnered with building owner Compass Properties to utilize Gold’s Gym, which occupies a three-floor space inside the CityCenter building, to offer fitness and health club amenities until the construction project at the MAC is complete.
The developers plan to update the club’s members every two weeks until construction starts. After that, updates will come monthly. Jeffers said plans for groundbreaking ceremony are in the works.