Property values along Milwaukee streetcar route up 28 percent

The Hop begins service Nov. 2

Rendering of the new tower.

Property values within one-quarter mile of The Hop streetcar route have increased almost 28 percent since the $124 million streetcar project was approved by the city in 2015, according to Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Beth Weirick, CEO Milwaukee Downtown BID #21, Mark Irgens, Josh Jeffers, Mayor Tom Barrett

The increase in property values have grown at twice the rate of property value growth citywide, Barrett said.

Property values within one-quarter mile of the streetcar route rose from $3.090 million to $3.95 million since 2015, according to the city assessor. Citywide, values went up from $24.41 million to $27.68 million or 13.4 percent during that same period.

“Some people would call this causation, some people would call it correlation, I call it investment,” Barrett said.

Barrett made the announcement on Tuesday at a Hop station located at Broadway and Wells Street, where two development projects are currently taking place.

Irgens is currently building a 25-story office tower to be called the BMO Harris Financial Center south of Wells Street between North Water Street and North Broadway. The $130 million building will become the new Wisconsin headquarters for BMO Harris Bank and law firm Michael Best & Friedrich LLP.

Rendering of the BMO Harris Financial Center.

Also on Broadway, a development team led by Josh Jeffers and Tony Janowiec are renovating the 100-year-old Milwaukee Athletic Club. The $47.4 million project will include a 96-room hotel and a street-level restaurant once completed.

Since 2011, when the streetcar line was announced, Jeffers’ company, J. Jeffers & Co., has purchased, built or is in the process of building $132 million worth of real estate spanning six properties along the streetcar line.

Jeffers said his only complaint is that the streetcar has taken seven years to get built.

“This is a huge milestone for Milwaukee,” Jeffers said. “It’s all about connectivity and connecting as many of the seemingly forgotten corners of downtown as possible. Historically, Milwaukee has been viewed by the investment community as a third-tier city. Only recently have we started to see an elevation in our status as a city, and that’s thanks to investments like this.”

Mark Irgens, CEO of Irgens, echoed Jeffers’ sentiments saying his company is a supporter of the streetcar.

“It will help transform downtown and make it more accessible for residents and visitors alike,” Irgens said. “Milwaukee is taking a big step forward in modernizing its overall transportation system.”

The M-Line of The Hop is scheduled to begin service Nov. 2. During its first year of operation all rides are free thanks to presenting sponsor Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.

Sign up for the BizTimes email newsletter

Stay up-to-date on the people, companies and issues that impact business in Milwaukee and Southeast Wisconsin

No posts to display