A group affiliated with the developers behind The Avenue project in downtown Milwaukee has acquired a commercial building in Walker's Point.
According to state real-estate transaction records, the group recently purchased the building at 235-237 S. Second St. for $509,000. The entity, 235 S 2nd Street LLC, lists an address identical to Minneapolis-based Hempel Cos. and state Department of Financial Institutions records name Tony Janowiec, president and chief manager of Milwaukee-based Interstate Development Partners LLC, as its registered agent.
The building was acquired from Mequon-based Spooner Art Development Corp., which is owned by Michael Spooner. It has an assessed value of $676,000, according to city records.
Janowiec, along with Hempel president and chief executive officer Josh Krsnak, are turning the former Shops of Grand Avenue into a mixed-use center featuring offices, apartments and a first-floor food hall
Krsnak said on Friday there aren't yet any specific plans to redevelop the building. However, he was interested in the building because of its price and its location in the trendy Walker's Point neighborhood.
He also confirmed the Second Street building is the first Milwaukee property he owns that isn't connected to The Avenue.
"When we see an opportunity in a really good or upcoming area, we like to jump on it," he said, adding this approach was similar to how The Avenue came about.
Krsnak noted when he and Janowiec purchased the Grand Avenue mall property in December 2015, they also had no specific plans in place. However, it was an attractive deal due to its price point, he said. The group acquired the property for $24.5 million.
"We are certainly looking to add value to the neighborhood and this property," he said.
Indeed, Walker's Point is an area seeing lots of development activity. These are among the most recently announced or learned projects:
The neighborhood's popularity is also on display through interest from potential retail tenants at the Second Street property. Krsnak said that even in the short time he's owned the building, several groups have reached out with an interest in occupying the first-floor space.
The space is currently vacant, and was most recently home to Jamaican restaurant Likkle Jamayka.