In Marketplace

This alley off Wisconsin Avenue, between 2nd and 3rd Streets, could be brought to life. (PHOTO: The Kubala Washatko Architects)

9 views of a potential Grand Avenue makeover

After putting together a design team to look at ways to transform The Shops of Grand Avenue, the property's owners – Milwaukee's Aggero Group and Minneapolis' Hempel Companies, who purchased the mall last year – today released a series of renderings showing ways the mall could be converted into a mix of large office spaces, retail – including a grocery store – and more.

"Given the size of the property, the development lends itself uniquely to satisfy several market demands," Tony Janowiec, principal of the Aggero Group, said in a statement issued with the renderings, created by The Kubala Washatko Architects.

"The property's large, contiguous floorplates, high ceiling heights, mostly column free space, and its expansive glass roof structure allow for an unprecedented office experience for the large corporate users. In addition, the growing residential density in the neighborhood, including a lack of fresh food options near the Marquette campus, make a grocery store a natural solution. The urban marketplace allows for the best of Milwaukee's retail and restaurant experiences to coexist while creating a sense of place and welcoming for every Westown patron."

The team included TKWA UrbanLab, Colliers International, Mid America Real Estate Group and NEWaukee, which celebrates YP Week this week.

"There are few locations in the city of Milwaukee where the whole community can feel a sense of belonging," said NEWaukee CEO Angela Damiani in the statement. "Our vision for the development is grand. We believe the property will be Milwaukee's next must-see destination, where the lines of community and commerce are blended naturally and easily."

The renderings suggest a complete makeover of the main entrance at 3rd and Wisconsin, removal of the elevator inside that entrance, the location of a grocery store in the old Linens 'n Things space in the Plankinton Arcade, an alley marketplace outdoors and more. Here are the renderings...

1. Grocery store in the Plankinton Arcade

2. Grocery store in the Plankinton Arcade, looking west

3. Urban marketplace, elevator removed

4. Urban marketplace, looking west from 2nd Street entrance

5. Alley marketplace, off Wisconsin, between 2nd and 3rd Streets

6. Large office use

7. Large office use

8. New 3rd Street entrance

9. New 3rd Street entrance, looking out toward Wisconsin Avenue


DowntownRed | April 26, 2016 at 4:17 p.m. (report)

I'm glad to see someone finally realize that Grand Avenue is no longer a "regional" draw. It will be better utilized designed to appeal to the residents of the area. As a former resident of Eastown, it was so nice to have Metro Market two blocks away. After walking by the new apartments in Westown, i realized the residents don't have the same "livability" as the east side residents. Adding a grocery store would be a great idea. And I know a lot of people would like to see Sendik's go in there, keep in mind that Kroger recently invested in Lucky's Market, an organic grocer that focuses on smaller, urban locations. The Lucky Market in Columbus, OH would be a perfect template for the Grand Ave. store.

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