Second mixed-use building moving forward at Freshwater Plaza

Freshwater Plaza. Photo by Wangard Partners.

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 04:51 pm

The developer of Freshwater Plaza will be back before the city this summer with updated plans to the Walker’s Point mixed-use development that include a five-to six-story retail and apartment building.

Freshwater Plaza. Photo by Wangard Partners.

The updates come after last fall’s decision to scrap original plans to include an office development in the third phase of the project.

Project developer Stewart Wangard, chairman and CEO of Wauwatosa-based Wangard Companies, said at the time he had been approached by several retailers, including the national discount chain, interested in locating at the site. Wangard and the city of Milwaukee, ultimately determined retail and apartments would be more feasible at the site.

The city provided $5.3 million in financing for the first phase of the project, which included municipal improvements and a 46,280-square-foot Cermak Fresh Market grocery store.

The new building could include up to 45,000 square feet of commercial space and 76 housing units, according to documents submitted to the city. Parking will be located on the second floor, Wangard said Thursday.

“The housing plan will include an affordable housing component, which is consistent with the city’s goals,” he said.

Freshwater Plaza is a four-phase 180,000-square-foot development at Greenfield Avenue and South 1st Street that includes the Cermak store and a three-story apartment building with retail on the ground floor.

A 3,500-square-foot Sherwin-Williams paint store opened in one of the outlots along South First Street. A second outlot retail store is also planned.

“I have always been optimistic that Freshwater Plaza would be a retail and service hub,” Wangard said. “Now that Sherwin-Williams has been finalized, it is attracting more attention to the neighborhood.”

Wangard will ask the city plan commission to approve a signage and design plan for the project, that will also include the School of Freshwater Sciences.

“Our goal is to serve as a gateway to the school,” Wangard said.

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