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Plans for Innovation Park hotel move south

Milwaukee County's Economic and Community Development Committee gave initial approval Monday to the UWM Real Estate Foundation’s request to allow a hotel further south on the property than originally expected. (Rendering courtesy of UWM Real Estate Foundation)

A Milwaukee County committee gave initial approval to the UWM Real Estate Foundation’s request to amend its development agreement for Innovation Park in Wauwatosa to allow a hotel further south than originally expected.

The original agreement, signed in February 2011, allowed for a hotel in the northwest portion of the campus with the expectation that a new road would connect the hotel to Swan Boulevard. Those plans changed when the area set aside as a butterfly habitat was larger than anticipated. The amendment, which the Economic and Community Development Committee approved 6-1 on Monday, allows the hotel to be built in the southeast portion of the campus.

Bruce Block, chair of the foundation, said a developer has been speaking with the foundation and the city and has signed a letter of intent to build a hotel on the site. The developer needs the county to approve the amendment and allow the hotel to be built on the site before working on a design, he said. Block refused to name the developer, but said the firm has worked locally in the past.

The hotel could have as many as 128 rooms and would be designed for extended stays to cater to nearby medical and research interests.

– Beth Kevit

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