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Crews pour concrete at Couture site for incoming public transportation terminal

Construction crews poured 600 yards of concrete Tuesday morning at The Couture site in downtown Milwaukee to serve as a base for a public transit terminal.

The transit terminal will serve both The Hop and Milwaukee County’s East-West Bus Rapid Transit line and will be the first transit-oriented development in Milwaukee, Barrett Lo Visionary Development president Rick Barrett said at Tuesday’s news conference.

The company expects to have people moved into the residential part of the project in the third quarter of 2023, Barrett added.

After the concrete base is laid down, another contractor will lay rails for The Hop to create a connection between streetcars on East Michigan and East Clybourn streets, Senior Project Manager Eric Sadler said.

The $118 million project will be a mixed-use development with commercial and residential sections. While rising construction costs have affected the project, contracts were completed early in preparation, company officials said.

“It’s very attractive because people want to be in a situation where they can live, work and play in a close vicinity,” Barrett said. “There’s tremendous excitement about the project both locally and nationally,” he added.

Developers are in talks with the city to coordinate bus stops inside the terminal to connect to the East-West BRT, Barrett said. The transit route, created by the Milwaukee County Transit System, will extend from The Couture site to Wauwatosa.

Crews managed by Findorff had a July 31 deadline to connect to the city’s streetcar and county rapid-transit line, or otherwise must pay back a $1.4 million grant. The Federal Transit Administration gave a $14.2 million grant to lay track for the streetcar, and Barrett Lo is responsible for paying back any unspent federal money if the administration requires repayment for missing a deadline.

Crews put up several cranes over the site in early 2022 and developers expect it to rise to more than 600 feet. The 2-acre project also includes a 44-story apartment building.

Crews pour 600 yards of concrete base for a planned transit terminal to connect to Milwaukee’s street car and bus rapid transit. (Staff photo by Ethan Duran)

About Ethan Duran

Ethan Duran is the construction and development reporter at The Daily Reporter. He can be reached at (414) 551-7505 or [email protected]

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