Jul 21, 2015

City of Milwaukee Receives $1 Million State Grant for Water Technology Business Park

The business park is under construction adjacent to the Global Water Center

Reed Street Yards Global Water Center Milwaukee water technology business park

The city of Milwaukee has been awarded a $1 million state grant for the development of Reed Street Yards, a water technology business park now under construction adjacent to the Global Water Center.

In addition, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. (WEDC) has agreed to provide up to $2 million in state tax credits to Rexnord Corp. to support the company’s relocation of its Zurn Industries subsidiary to Reed Street Yards. The relocation is expected to create 120 new jobs.

The WEDC grant to the city will be used to help fund environmental site work and geotechnical activities on the 17-acre site in the Menomonee Valley. Once completed, Reed Street Yards, located in Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood, will be home to a mixed-use urban office, educational, research and technology complex that will focus on the international water industry.

“Reed Street Yards will complement the outstanding work already taking place at the nearby Global Water Center and will further solidify the position of Milwaukee and Wisconsin as a world leader in water technology,” said Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, who made the announcement with city and industry officials on Tuesday, July 14. “The state is proud to play a key role in moving this project forward.”

Located on the south bank of the Menomonee River, Reed Street Yards is expected to ultimately house more than 1 million sq ft of space and will join the Global Water Center as the physical hub of an international water technology cluster. Developer Peter Moede and General Capital Group will begin construction later this year on a four-story, 80,000-sq ft multiuse building called Water Tech One. The $20 million building, which has been designed with uncompromising attention to sustainability and cutting edge water, energy and technology features, is expected to be completed in 2016.

Rexnord Corp. is relocating Zurn Industries to a 52,000-sq-ft standalone office building in Reed Street Yards. Construction on that building is expected to begin this year. WEDC has authorized the company to receive up to $2 million in tax credits. The actual amount of credits the company will earn is contingent upon the company meeting specific job creation and wage requirements.

“As we establish the Zurn headquarters in Milwaukee, we greatly appreciate the tremendous support that we have received from both the state of Wisconsin and city of Milwaukee,” said Todd Adams, Rexnord president and CEO. “Rexnord anticipates continued growth and expansion of our water businesses as we believe Wisconsin and Milwaukee have created an ecosystem for water technology companies to access world-class talent, innovation and technology development, as well as research partnerships that will help shape and address the world’s water challenges.”

Dean Amhaus, president and CEO of The Water Council, added: “The funding from the WEDC and the collaboration with the City of Milwaukee is a great example of a true ‘public-private partnership’ that encompasses governments at all levels. This leadership is critical in attracting global companies such as Zurn and helping to make Milwaukee a world water hub."

Reed Street Yards, located on a former rail yard and truck terminal, will be one of Wisconsin’s first eco-industrial parks, which balances natural resources with economic development. An integrated storm water treatment plan has been developed that will feature rain gardens, and green building guidelines have been adopted to promote sustainable development. In addition, a 40-ft buffer being established along the Menomonee Canal for storm water management will also serve as a new segment of the Hank Aaron Trail.

The investment by WEDC at the Reed Street Yards is complemented by Tax Incremental Financing resources from the city of Milwaukee that includes $6.2 million in infrastructure expenditures and another $5 million to support job creation.