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Home / Commercial Construction / Milwaukee Tool closes on purchase of office in downtown MKE, plans renovation work in June

Milwaukee Tool closes on purchase of office in downtown MKE, plans renovation work in June

Milwaukee Tool plans to begin renovation work next month on a building in downtown Milwaukee after closing on its purchase of the property late last week.

The Brookfield-based manufacturer plans to spend $30 million to overhaul the 350,000-square-foot, mostly vacant office building, at 501 W. Michigan St., to provide space for 1,200 workers. The project promises to bring a big influx of employees to downtown Milwaukee.

One of Milwaukee Tool’s affiliates closed on Friday on the purchase of the property, paying nearly $8 million, according to a Monday filing with the Milwaukee County Register of Deeds. Before this, the property had belonged to the developer Scott Lauie, of F Street Group, who bought it in 2019 for $4 million.

Heather McGee, a spokeswoman for Milwaukee Tool said the company is “progressing toward” renovation work getting underway in early June. McGee didn’t say which contractors the company was working with.

Milwakee Tool’s purchase of the building comes after the Milwaukee Common Council unanimously approved a deal to provide as much as $20 million in incentives to the company for its work at the site.

The project’s second phase could add as many as three stories to the current structure, providing 150,000 square feet of space for as many as 2,000 workers.

Milwaukee’s tax increment financing deal Milwaukee Tool would provide $12.1 million in grants if the manufacturer created 1,200 jobs in phase one of the project. Milwaukee Tool would also quality for another $7.9 million in incentives if it created an additional 790 jobs and completed an addition to the building.

Milwaukee Tool has been growing rapidly since 2011, when it employed just 300 workers in southeast Wisconsin. Its recent projects include a $100 million addition to its hand-tool manufacturing plant in Menomonee Falls and a $22 million addition to its Brookfield headquarters among other work. The company is on track to employ about 3,000 workers in Wisconsin by the end of the year.

About Nate Beck, [email protected]

Nate Beck is The Daily Reporter's construction staff writer. He can be reached at (414) 225-1814 (office) or 414-388-5635 (mobile).

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