Regional Roundup

Posted on Aug 31, 2020 :: Regional Roundup
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Posted by , Insight on Business Staff Writer

interstate 41 Corridor

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

Construction gets underway on Brio Building in Oshkosh

Construction has begun on Merge Urban Development Group’s Brio Building at 155 Jackson St. in Oshkosh. The five-story mixed-use building includes more than 10,000 square feet of commercial space and 60 market-rate residential units in downtown Oshkosh.

The development site is located within walking distance of the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Lake Winnebago, the City of Oshkosh’s waterfront bike trail and Leach Amphitheater.

The commercial space is fully pre-leased by the Oshkosh Food Co-op, which was incorporated as a not-for-profit co-op in 2013 with the goal of creating a member-owned, full-service grocery store in Oshkosh’s central city. The cooperative recently met its $1.6 million fundraising milestone, releasing the design team to refine the concept. The co-op will begin construction within the tenant space on the corner of Jackson Street and Pearl Avenue in April 2021.

The Brio Building is the first in a series of buildings Merge plans to develop in the Marion Road Redevelopment Area. The development team began working with the City of Oshkosh in 2018, drawing from concepts in the Imagine Oshkosh master plan to propose the redevelopment of a nearly 6-acre area in the central city. The properties sit in a federally designated Opportunity Zone. The capital group includes investors from four states, including Wisconsin.

“We couldn’t be more excited about this project. We believe it will impact the community in a really meaningful way because of the years of work and commitment that the co-op put in to get to this point,” said Brent Dahlstrom of Merge. “We are humbled to be a part of a growing neighborhood with the co-op as the anchor tenant in the Brio Building.”

More housing, grocery store coming to downtown Green Bay

A plan to bring more housing units and a grocery store to downtown Green Bay is moving forward.

The project, which will be located in the former Associated Bank parking lot in the 200 block of Monroe Avenue, will include a 76-unit apartment building with space for a grocery store on the ground floor and 12 townhouses. The grocery store would be an important development for the area, as it’s part of a U.S. Department of Agriculture-designated food desert.

Green Bay’s Redevelopment Authority approved a term sheet with developer Gorman and Co. for the apartments; Maurer’s Market grocery store has already indicated interest in the first-floor retail space. NeighborWorks Green Bay will build
the townhomes.

According to city estimates, the development will add $13 million in property value and $312,000 in new property tax revenue annually.

The Lakeshore

Door, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Sheboygan Counties

Fincantieri plans upgrades at Sturgeon Bay shipyard

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding is preparing to upgrade its Sturgeon Bay shipyard equipment and facilities this year to assist with work on the Navy’s new guided-missile frigate.

The improvements will be within the current shipyard’s perimeter. On the south end of the yard near Georgia Street, the buildings formerly owned and operated by Palmer Johnson Yachts will become the hub for government work, including the LCS and FFG(X) programs.

The manufacturer will expand or update some buildings to accommodate the larger fabrication efforts, a blast/prime/paint building and more room for support services. The company has filed permits with the city to approve the height of some buildings and to start construction.

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding is partnering with its sister shipyard, Fincantieri Marinette Marine, which was awarded the $795 million contract for the Navy’s first-in-class frigate last spring. If all goes well with the first ship, the Navy will have the opportunity to exercise its options on the original contract for nine additional ships and services valued at $5.5 billion. The detailed design work of the first vessel began in May and the start of fabrication is planned for 2021.

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding will build large portions of the frigate hull and ship them by barge across Lake Michigan to Marinette — a process also done with the Littoral Combat Ship construction. Fincantieri ACE Marine in Green Bay also constructs aluminum modules for LCSs and then sends them north to Marinette as part of a collaborative system-of-yards approach that leverages the talent and capabilities across Fincantieri’s three Wisconsin facilities.

Briess Malt completes $17 million expansion project in Manitowoc

Briess Malt & Ingredients Co. completed a $17 million project that expanded its custom barley processing and malting operation facilities and is expected to create 20 new jobs. The project began in November 2017 and was completed in phases at its downtown location on Jay Street.

Hamann Construction completed the project, and work included demolition of an aging structure, replacement and updates to underground water and sewer, infrastructure work, masonry and mechanical, installation of four custom roasters, construction of grain silos and a warehouse/main tower, and creation of a modern facility for an automated packaging line for the production and packaging of specialty roasted malts. The facility also added a rail building for on/off railcar loading of materials along the Lake Michigan shore.

The new space will house a Briess Experience Center designed to be a gathering spot to engage customers and highlight the company’s traditions. Briess is a leading producer and marketer of specialty malts to the beer industry and supplier of specialty grain- and starch-based ingredients to the food and beverage industries.

The Northwoods

Florence, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto Counties

Menominee Tribe, county to get their first-ever bank

The Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin and Menominee County will get their first bank later this year.

Bay Bank, which is owned by the Oneida Nation, plans to open a branch office on the Menominee Reservation in Keshena.

Wolf River Development Co. is developing the 6,100-square-foot mixed-use building. The project includes enhancing an existing gas station with a new convenience store, car wash and the Bay Bank branch office. Keller Inc. is the general contractor for the Standing Pines Convenience Store project.

Bay Bank, which has two offices in the Green Bay area, anticipates having the new 2,200-square-foot branch in Keshena open in December. Bay Bank is the only tribally owned bank in Wisconsin.

NWTC, UWGB Marinette campuses answer call for additional nurses

With states like Wisconsin continuing to face a shortage in nurses to serve patients, leaders at two colleges are developing a new nursing education model in Marinette.

The Marinette Nursing Track is set to begin this fall, allowing nursing students to obtain an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) in four years. The track is a direct result of the Marinette Area Higher Education Coalition, a partnership between Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, Marinette, and the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Marinette Campus.

Students receiving their BSN through the Marinette Nursing Track can save thousands in tuition compared to going through a traditional four-year BSN program.

Students will take their first-year classes at UW-Green Bay, Marinette Campus and years two and three at NWTC Marinette (obtaining an ADN in the process). They will complete year four through UW-Green Bay, Marinette Campus with a combination of in-person, blended and online courses with flexibility to meet students’ needs.

Throughout their schooling, students will find greater flexibility in course scheduling between the two locations because of the colleges’ united approach to meeting the area’s need for nurses.

In Wisconsin, according to ANEW (Administrators of Nursing Education of Wisconsin), more than 27,000 nurses will be needed to fill the RN nursing gap by 2040.

West Central

Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara, Marquette, Green Lake Counties

Heidel House could reopen in Green Lake as soon as May

The Heidel House Resort & Spa could reopen next spring after the facility’s owner accepted an offer from a new buyer. The deal is scheduled to close in mid-September, with a possible reopening date in May.

The iconic resort closed its doors in May 2019. At the time, the resort’s owner, Fiore Companies, cited a changing hospitality industry and the facility’s close proximity to Wisconsin Dells in its decision to close.

The original Heidel House estate was built in 1890 as a private residence. It opened as an inn for guests in 1945, and by the 1970s, it had become a popular destination. To increase the resort’s appeal as the years passed, it added the Evensong Spa in 2006 and in 2014 hired Marcus Corp. to manage the property.

When the Heidel House closed, it dealt a blow to the economy of the small community. Green Lake County saw its tourism dollars decrease from $42.8 million in 2018 to $36.2 million in 2019, a 15.4 percent drop.

Economic development leaders in the county have stressed the importance of finding a new owner for the resort. Its closure also led the Green Lake Area Chamber of Commerce to cut 75 percent of its marketing budget, said Executive Director Lisa Beck.