PEOPLE BUILDING PLACES

Thriving communities fuel creativity and ambition. In Wisconsin, we invest in our communities to help both people and businesses grow, develop and contribute to our state’s economic vitality. From our industrial city centers to the tree-lined streets of our town squares, WEDC’s comprehensive community development programs and funding initiatives empower local officials to develop sustainable economic development strategies that increase prosperity while redevelopment programs provide financial assistance for activities that revitalize commercial districts. By providing community and business leaders access to this knowledge and support, we’ve helped them create stronger community cornerstones and build vibrant economic epicenters throughout Wisconsin.

WEDC PROGRAMS

BROWNFIELDS GRANT PROGRAM

Grants to local governments, businesses, nonprofits and individuals for developing commercial and industrial sites that have been adversely affected by environmental contamination.

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BROWNFIELDS SITE ASSESSMENT PROGRAM

Grant funds for approved projects to assist local governments with conducting initial environmental assessment and demolition activities on an eligible abandoned, idle or underutilized industrial or commercial site.

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CAPACITY BUILDING GRANTS

Grants to assist local and regional economic development groups to create an advanced economic development network within the state.

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COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT INVESTMENT GRANT PROGRAM

Financial support for shovel-ready projects, with emphasis on downtown community efforts that deliver measurable benefits in job opportunities, property values, and/or leveraged investment by local and private partners.

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CONNECT COMMUNITIES

Resources, technical assistance and networking to support communities’ efforts to revitalize downtown districts.

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HISTORIC PRESERVATION TAX CREDIT

State income tax credit for 20 percent of the qualified rehabilitation expenditures for eligible buildings.

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IDLE SITES REDEVELOPMENT PROGRAM

Program for Wisconsin communities to support redevelopment plans for large sites that have been idle, abandoned or underutilized for at least five years.

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MINORITY BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM

Includes revolving loan funds offered through minority business associations and an annual conference that is the state’s premier event for minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses.

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WISCONSIN MAIN STREET PROGRAM

Program recognizes a commitment to preserving and revitalizing historic downtowns, and supporting these efforts with technical support, training and networking opportunities.

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WEDC SUCCESS STORIES

Sweetwater Apartments, Milwaukee

WEDC contributed $499,970 toward a $40 million project to create 291 apartment units in four buildings on the site of the former Sweet Water Organics property, a site with a long history of metal fabrication activity. Site cleanup included removal and capping to address a number of contaminants including PAHs, RCRA metals and PCBs, as well as asbestos abatement and demolition. The introduction of residential uses also required installation of a sub-slab venting system. Read More

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Nicolet Square, De Pere

WEDC contributed $15,000 toward a $60,000 planning process to address access, visibility, parking and other challenges associated with the dated Nicolet Square property. As a result of the plan, the city was able to address pedestrian access, consolidate dumpsters and improve traffic flow to the property. Encouraged by these improvements, Waseda Farms opened in a long-vacant structure on the site, investing nearly $10 million in site and building improvements and hiring more than 20 full-time employees. Read More

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Innovation Center, Mount Horeb

WEDC invested $250,000 in the $1.8 million project to convert a long-vacant former BMO Harris Bank building into the Mount Horeb Innovation Center, located in the heart of downtown. The structure will ultimately serve as a hub for entrepreneurs and offer co-working space options with its meeting rooms and technological capabilities, but also allowed Duluth Trading Company to expand office operations in Mount Horeb in the near term, relocating 80 executive employees from its overcrowded Belleville location. Read More

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Downtown Mall Site, Stevens Point

WEDC contributed $212,000 in site assessment and brownfields funding toward a $7.6 million project to renovate a failed downtown mall into an office and educational campus. The site was formerly home to a dry cleaning facility, which was destroyed by a fire. The site is now home to Mid-State Technical College and office space for 150 workers, and has also helped catalyze additional downtown projects including renovation of a historic theater, construction of a new hotel and improvements at other downtown properties. Additional project funding included CDBG and TIF funds. Read More

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WEDC contributed $499,970 toward a $40 million project to create 291 apartment units in four buildings on the site of the former Sweet Water Organics property, a site with a long history of metal fabrication activity. Site cleanup included removal and capping to address a number of contaminants including PAHs, RCRA metals and PCBs, as well as asbestos abatement and demolition. The introduction of residential uses also required installation of a sub-slab venting system. Read More

Read Story

WEDC contributed $15,000 toward a $60,000 planning process to address access, visibility, parking and other challenges associated with the dated Nicolet Square property. As a result of the plan, the city was able to address pedestrian access, consolidate dumpsters and improve traffic flow to the property. Encouraged by these improvements, Waseda Farms opened in a long-vacant structure on the site, investing nearly $10 million in site and building improvements and hiring more than 20 full-time employees. Read More

Read Story

WEDC invested $250,000 in the $1.8 million project to convert a long-vacant former BMO Harris Bank building into the Mount Horeb Innovation Center, located in the heart of downtown. The structure will ultimately serve as a hub for entrepreneurs and offer co-working space options with its meeting rooms and technological capabilities, but also allowed Duluth Trading Company to expand office operations in Mount Horeb in the near term, relocating 80 executive employees from its overcrowded Belleville location. Read More

Read Story

WEDC contributed $212,000 in site assessment and brownfields funding toward a $7.6 million project to renovate a failed downtown mall into an office and educational campus. The site was formerly home to a dry cleaning facility, which was destroyed by a fire. The site is now home to Mid-State Technical College and office space for 150 workers, and has also helped catalyze additional downtown projects including renovation of a historic theater, construction of a new hotel and improvements at other downtown properties. Additional project funding included CDBG and TIF funds. Read More

Read Story
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT GRANTS AWARDED
$
MILLION IN TOTAL AWARDS
$
MILLION IN LEVERAGED INVESTMENT GENERATED
$
LEVERAGED FOR EVERY $1 WEDC INVESTED
KEY STRATEGIC PARTNERS FUNDED

Source: WEDC FY17 Annual Report on Economic Development

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Information, tools, programs and partners fuel growth and new market opportunities.

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ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Our passion is supporting yours—through funding solutions, workspaces, mentoring and more.

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COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

Revitalizing commercial districts and preserving our state’s history enriches public spaces and helps encourage business activity.

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INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT

Public-private partnerships investing in “Centers of Excellence” that drive research, startups and business attraction to advance Wisconsin’s competitive advantage.

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INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Experts here and abroad that help Wisconsin companies navigate exporting logistics to successfully expand their global reach.

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“This is one of the best new programs (Certified Sites) that the state has started through WEDC. This is a big step for the step to help the Village of Howard move forward with its economic development strategy.”

PAUL EVERETT • VILLAGE ADMINISTRATOR, VILLAGE OF HOWARD

“Because of the funding from WEDC through the CDI Grant, this grocery store and hardware store will help attract and retain homeowners and businesses, bring jobs, and spur further economic development projects that will revitalize this area.”

KELLY KLEIN • COORDINATOR, IRON COUNTY DEVELOPMENT ZONE

“On behalf of the City of La Crosse, we are very excited and honored by the recognition from WEDC for our local Main Street program,” said Mayor Tim Kabat. “Downtown Mainstreet Inc., its members and our community partners have helped to create a downtown that we are all proud of and we look forward to collaborating with WEDC and the state of Wisconsin to raise historic downtown La Crosse to new heights.”

TIM KABAT • MAYOR, CITY OF LACROSSE