Washington County development

Industrial parks, West Bend downtown mix new and renewed development

According to Hartford Area Development Corp. (HADC) Executive Director Werner Wolpert, expansions in the Dodge Industrial Park lead the development news in that area.
In the Dodge Industrial Park, Hartford’s major corporate citizen, Quad/Graphics, is adding 217,000 square feet to its existing facility, bringing the firm’s total facilities in the park to 1.3 million square feet. The expansion is expected to result in the hiring of an additional 180 employees.
Another Dodge park tenant, Signicast, is adding on to the tune of 21,315 square feet for additional office space, 74,364 square feet for a machine shop and an additional production facility of 77,618 square feet.
In the Hartford and Western industrial parks, according to Wolpert, three other companies are expanding their facilities. Menasha Corp. is adding a 9,000-square-foot warehouse, Triton Corp. has added 10,000 square feet and Fire Line Creations has increased its facility by 30,000 square feet.
The HADC markets space in the Dodge park, and has recently closed eight land sales totaling 90 acres. Several of the sales will be associated with expansions of existing local industries, including Helgesen Industries, Automating Peripherals and Kendall Shoemake.
Companies HADC has brought into the park include USPL Auto Accessories of Colgate, and Advance Bag, Inc., which has relocated from nearby Jackson. The Advance Bag facility is expected to open this month and will initially employ 12 people. USPL manufactures spoilers and wings for late-model cars.

Jackson leverages TIFs
In Jackson, the fruits of years of disciplined TIF development are heavy on the vine. TIF development is responsible, according to village administrator Del Beaver, for an increase in the village’s statement of assessments from $50.5 million to $210 million between 1990 and 2000.
"We have just added a new part to TID No. 3, as the original TID No. 3 has been built out," Beaver said. "There are still about 20 acres available on the northeast corner of highways 60 and 45 that we expect activity will soon proceed on. Tilly Lake Business Park, part of TID No. 3 has been approved for build-out for low-impact retail and light industrial uses.
"Approximately 130 acres are still available in the Jackson Northwest Business Park. We have constructed a retention basin for the remaining undeveloped parcels. Quincy Container will have a certificate of occupancy this year. Universal Strap, Superior Stainless, Quincy Container and a multi-tenant building are all slated for construction in 2001. The construction firm Design to Construct – which worked on many of these buildings – will start construction on its own headquarters in Jackson Northwest in 2001."
In the more intermediate future, there are tentative plans for developing the southern end of the former Northland Cranberry property, Beaver said.

Germantown activity
According to village planner/zoning administrator Jason Gallo, the Village of Germantown is seeing less commercial development than in previous years, but industrial development activity is going strong. Commercial projects include a potential Home Depot location on Appleton Avenue and Highway Q and a 160,000-square-foot Menard’s location approved for Appleton Avenue and County Line Road.
Building activity has been brisk in the Germantown Industrial Park and Germantown Business Park, according to Gallo. In the industrial park, D&G Transportation has completed a 23,000-square-foot addition to its facility. Construction Concepts of Wisconsin is new to the development with a 12,040-square-foot building. Also new are Custom Pack Products at 25,000 square feet, Atwater-General Corp. at 22,620 square feet and Basic Metals at 43,000 square feet. Gallo added that there are still a few lots open in the industrial park.
In the Germantown Business Park, in an M1-zoned development with higher standards for construction and landscaping than the industrial development, Precision Woodwork is the newcomer, with a 41,300-square-foot project.

West Bend TIF-heavy
"We have eight active TIFs," Betty Pearson of the West Bend Chamber of Commerce said. "Some of them are just about done, others are just starting."
According to Pearson, the two most active are the West End Corporate Center, owned by Jim Schloemer of Continental Properties, and Wingate Creek Business Center, brokered by Ziegler-Bence.
The West End development has currently almost filled its commercial development allotment, according to Pearson, and will begin the light industrial and office development components of the project.
The city’s downtown is also part of a TIF district.
"The downtown is supposed to be a vital center for recreation and culture, as well as business activity," Pearson said. "We are currently working with consultants HNTB on plans for redeveloping the downtown."
Redevelopment opportunity is being driven by the removal of railroad tracks from the downtown area, making room for a trail, and by industrial properties being vacated by the appliance manufacturer, West Bend Company.

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