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$100 million project planned for Milwaukee riverfront land

Posted at 1:09 PM, Aug 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-06 17:35:49-04

MILWAUKEE -- A $100 million development is coming to Milwaukee’s Harbor District. It includes a hotel, retail space, offices and a restaurant. 

Developers plan to break ground on the development, called River 1, in the fall. The mixed-use space will go up near Becher and 1st Streets and it’s bordered by a bend in the Kinnickinnic River.

The development is less than 10 minutes from downtown and the airport. This is a project Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is proud of.

“It is part of the renaissance of Milwaukee. There’s a lot going on downtown in the heart of the city, but I’ve said all along that it would grow in the neighborhoods,” Barrett said. 

The development is slated for the Harbor District near Walker’s Point in Bay View, Alderman Tony Zielinkski’s District. 

“We’ve got a great river here and now we’re going to be able to take advantage of the river,” said Zielinski. 

Michels Corporation is one of the biggest utility and transportation contractors in the country. It will anchor the mixed use space. Ruth Michels was one of four employees when her husband started the company in 1959. She drove the dump truck. 

“We stuck with it and we’re over 50 years now,” said Michels. 

River 1 will include 220,000 square feet of office space, 67 units of multi-family housing, 19,000 square feet of retail, a 103 room hotel about 1,000 underground parking spaces and 1,000 feet of river walk accessible to the public. 

Nearby businesses are excited to see the neighborhood transform and hopefully bring in more customers. 

“Right now it’s an empty gravel lot. Having people in the neighborhood, having new life, new business, new things going on is good for everybody,” said Brian Sammons, Twisted Path Distillery.

The first phase of the project should be done by Summer 2020.