Tribeca Gallery Café & Books closing Freshwater Plaza location

Not enough foot traffic for the Watertown-based concept, owner says

Freshwater Plaza. Photo by Wangard Partners.

Last updated on July 3rd, 2019 at 07:21 pm

Tribeca Gallery Café & Books at 1318 S. 1st Street, photo courtesy of Tribeca Gallery Café & Books-Instagram

One of the first businesses to open at the Freshwater Plaza development in Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood is closing its doors.

Tribeca Gallery Café & Books, located at 1318 S. 1st Street, will shutter at the end of April, according to a recent Instagram post. It opened in December 2017.

“The concept did not take off as I forecasted,” said owner Julie Crnkovich. “It had a challenging start and I ran out of money. I looked for equity investors and a partner, but it was a difficult search.”

The Walker’s Point bookstore and cafe is the second location for Tribeca, which first opened in 2007 in Watertown. That location has done well and remains open, Crnkovich said.

Tribeca’s Milwaukee cafe is located at the busy intersection of South First Street and Greenfield Avenue. But despite heavy auto traffic and plenty of parking on the street and in its parking lot, the cafe wasn’t able to bring in enough foot traffic, she said.

“The combination of books and a cafe has this magical quality to it– it can be calming and peaceful, but it didn’t work out this time,” she said.

The new Freshwater Plaza mixed-use development is anchored by a 42,000-square-foot Cermak Fresh Market grocery store and includes office space, apartments and multi-tenant retail buildings. The development is home to new Asian restaurant Momo Mee, which opened late last year, along with other concepts.

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Maredithe has covered retail, restaurants, entertainment and tourism since 2018. Her duties as associate editor include copy editing, page proofing and managing work flow. Meyer earned a degree in journalism from Marquette University and still enjoys attending men’s basketball games to cheer on the Golden Eagles. Also in her free time, Meyer coaches high school field hockey and loves trying out new restaurants in Milwaukee.

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