Regional Roundup

Posted on Jul 29, 2020 :: Regional Roundup
Posted by , Insight on Business Staff Writer

• interstate 41 Corridor

Brown, Calumet, Outagamie, Winnebago, Fond du Lac Counties

Nelson Family Fund gives $500K to pedestrian bridge

A $500,000 grant from a charitable fund established with the largest gift in the history of the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region will help pay for the construction of a new bicycle and pedestrian bridge over the Fox River power canal near downtown Appleton.

The Appleton Common Council accepted the grant for the walkway between the future Ellen Kort Peace Park and Pullman’s restaurant from the David L. and Rita E. Nelson Family Fund, established within the Community Foundation with an estate gift of more than $100 million.

The council also voted to name the 750-foot bicycle and pedestrian bridge in honor of the couple to recognize the lead gift.

Plans originally called for conversion of an existing Appleton railroad trestle, but an engineering study found the underwater structure is deteriorated to the point that renovation would cost $1 million more than replacement. The new trestle will be just downstream from the old railroad trestle. It has not been decided when or if the old trestle will be removed.

The total project cost is estimated at $2.8 million, with $300,000 coming from a Greenways Committee grant from Outagamie County, from compensation paid for an electric transmission line built in the county. Construction is to begin in 2021 and conclude in 2022.

The proposal still must gain approvals from several state and federal government regulators. The bridge will be part of a network of trails in the old industrial flats and downtown that the city is calling the Heritage Hydro Trailway. Construction is underway for another river crossing on an old railroad trestle at Lawe Street.

Aurora BayCare Health Center opens near I-41 in Kaukauna

A new Aurora BayCare outpatient clinic opened its doors in Kaukauna, expanding residents’ access to health care and specialized medical services.

The 72,000-square foot clinic houses 13 clinic specialties and seven outpatient surgery specialties, including an Urgent Care Plus. It also offers a dedicated area for rehabilitation and sports medicine, primary care, pharmacy and diagnostics including a full, onsite lab, mobile MRI, X-ray, CT and mammography. The surgery center is tentatively planned to open this fall.

“Our vibrant county is rapidly growing, and so we’re proud to partner with Aurora BayCare to bring these essential services to our community, from primary care to orthopedics to Urgent Care Plus,” said Kaukauna Mayor Anthony Penterman. “This facility will eliminate travel for a great number of our residents who currently are commuting several miles to receive the care they need.”

• The Lakeshore

Door, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Sheboygan Counties

Sun Graphics breaks ground on $5.5M Sheboygan Falls facility

Branding and marketing agency Sun Graphics Media, which is also the owner of Franzen Graphics commercial printing, announced the construction of a new $5.5 million, 53,000-square-foot headquarters in Sheboygan Falls.

Quasius Construction is building the eco-friendly facility that will serve as the new home for Sun Graphics Media and Franzen Graphics. The combined headquarters, which is scheduled to be completed in 2021, will house all 46 employees and offer the ability to expand and create upward of 20 more jobs in Sheboygan Falls and surrounding areas.

The facility includes a ground floor manufacturing area for commercial printing operations. A two-story office area will house the marketing agency and administrative personnel. The new office space will contain two large break areas, a game room, a full gym with showers and changing rooms, and a soundproof studio for video and photo production.

Town of Sheboygan creates its first tax incremental district

The Town of Sheboygan has created its first tax incremental district, becoming one of just 22 towns in Wisconsin to create a TID.

The TID covers 509 acres straddling the intersection of Interstate 43 and State Highway 42. The town plans to use the TID to encourage responsible, aggressive growth in the corridor and is seeking to attract retail, recreational amenities, hotels and restaurants, office and mixed-use properties, condos and apartments, and single-family residential.

• West Central

Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara, Marquette, Green Lake Counties

Shawano County Fair to be held as scheduled in September

Despite many cancellations in the region, including the Waupaca County Fair, organizers of the Shawano County Fair announced the event will carry on as scheduled and run Sept. 2-7 on the grounds of the Shawano County Speedway.

Organizers say the fair will have a different look, and they will put in place precautions to operate safely amid the pandemic. For example, bingo will not be held, and the focus instead will shift to highlighting local bands. In addition, leaders planned to contact all vendors and nonprofits to assess their comfort level with operating stands at the fair.

“It will be a process to get it all done, but we feel we owe it to Shawano County, the nonprofits whose biggest fundraiser every year is the fair, and the kids showing animals and exhibits to at least try to give you all the fair you deserve,” organizers wrote in a Facebook post.

• The Northwoods

Florence, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto Counties

Marinette among cities to net coastal communities grant

The city of Marinette is receiving a grant from the Department of Administration’s Wisconsin Coastal Management Program.

Gov. Tony Evers announced grants totaling $1.5 million for local, state and tribal governments, regional planning commissions, universities and nonprofit organizations through the program, which aims to protect and improve the Great Lakes resources across Wisconsin’s coastal communities.

Marinette received $20,500 to update its comprehensive plan. The update will include an increased emphasis on water levels, coastal hazards, resiliency and sustainability, and it will build on the city’s recent river cleanup.

In addition to Marinette, cities and organizations in the New North receiving grants included the Village of Allouez, ADA-accessible kayak launches; Wisconsin Maritime Museum, Manitowoc, All Hands on Deck project; Brown County, Bay of Green Bay coastal flooding/pre-disaster mitigation planning; Two Rivers, comprehensive plan update; Great Lakes Natural Resource Partnership, Cleveland, water quality literacy campaign; the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, developing a Cat Island restoration and management plan; City of Kewaunee, lakefront property acquisition; City of Manitowoc, Manitowoc River Watershed Trail; Village of Wrightstown, Mueller Park fishing and boating project; Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission, northeast coastal resiliency study and technical assistance/outreach; NEW Water, planning for resiliency in the East River watershed; and Visit Sheboygan STEAM Inc., environmental education pilot program.

Statewide, 39 grants were awarded to assist with projects totaling more than $3.4 million.

Video features newly named Florence County waterfall

Breakwater Falls is a 60-foot, three-tiered waterfall that, until recently, did not have a name and was missing from maps for 90 years. It is the sixth-largest waterfall in Wisconsin and flows over bedrock that is 2 billion years old.

Breakwater is one of eight waterfalls in Florence County that are located on the Pine and Popple Wild Rivers. These state-designated Wild Rivers in the heart of Florence County were purposely left wild and undeveloped for the public to experience true, rugged wildness.

The waterfall is located 1.75 miles west of County Road N where Power Dam Road dead ends at the We Energies Powerhouse. To visit it, park near the turnaround and follow the signs up the dam’s access road to reach the top of the falls just past the base of the dam.

A local Wild Rivers enthusiast and expert, John Roberts, has created a nine-minute video, “Wisconsin’s Secret Waterfall,” showcasing this virtually unknown waterfall. To view the video, visit To learn more about Florence County waterfalls, visit and select “Waterfalls.”