Joseph Zilber, the founder of Milwaukee-based Zilber Ltd. who is redeveloping the former Pabst brewery complex in downtown Milwaukee into a mixed-use urban neighborhood, wants to create a neighborhood improvement district (NID) for the development, called The Brewery.
NIDs are a fairly new tool created by the state Legislature, and this would be the first one in Milwaukee. A NID is similar to a business improvement district. (BID). In a BID, property owners are assessed a fee, based on the value of their properties, to pay for neighborhood improvements such as landscaping, promotional materials, signage, cleanup work and the downtown public service ambassadors. However, a BID can only take assessments from commercial properties. NIDs can take assessments from all property owners, including residential properties.
Zilber wants to use funds gathered by the NID to pay for maintenance of the Pabst brewery sign over Juneau Avenue, maintenance of a pocket park planned for North 10th Street, bioswale maintenance, street cleaning, snow removal and maintenance of other common areas in The Brewery, according to Zilber’s assistant, Mike Mervis, and Dan McCarthy, vice president of The Brewery Project LLC.
The NID for The Brewery project still needs approval by the Milwaukee Common Council.