NML says it is exceeding hiring goals on Tower and Commons project

Building has topped out at 550 feet


Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. says it is exceeding its hiring goals for the 32-story, 1.1 million-square-foot Tower and Commons building that is under construction at its downtown Milwaukee headquarters campus.

Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons under construction in downtown Milwaukee.
Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons under construction in downtown Milwaukee.

The company’s most recent report on the project indicates it had let contracts to local small business enterprises SBEs in the amount of $113.4 million, or 30 percent of total projected project costs as of the end of the first quarter 2016. Hours worked by 536 Milwaukeeans hired through the city’s Residents Preference Program (RPP) totaled 338,805, or 44 percent of the total hours worked on the project as of that date.

As part of the $54 million tax incremental financing (TIF) deal with the city of Milwaukee, the company pledged to use local SBEs for at least 25 percent of our construction costs and hire local workers through RPP for at least 40 percent of the hours worked on the project.

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“We’ve been exceeding those goals almost from the start of the project,” the company said in a statement today.
Updating the progress of the construction project, the tower has reached its total height of 550 feet and is wrapped more than halfway up with glass curtain wall assembled by a crew of 60 local workers at Century City Business Park located near 31st Street and Capitol Drive in Milwaukee.

The three-story Commons portion of the project, fronting Mason Street, is completely enclosed in granite and glass, and work on the interiors has begun.

Construction is underway a Van Buren Street skywalk, and work will soon begin on a Mason Street skywalk. Both will connect the Tower and Commons to other buildings on the Northwestern Mutual campus.

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In addition, crews are at work preparing to landscape the 4.6-acre Northwestern Mutual Gardens along the Wisconsin-Prospect Avenue curve.

The entire project is expected to be complete in late 2017.

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