WEDC has helped drive passionate, innovative companies to the top of their industries. Explore these success stories to learn more about how WEDC’s support can help companies advance in Wisconsin.

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UWM Innovation Campus, Wauwatosa

UWM Innovation Campus, Wauwatosa

WEDC contributed $762,500 in two grants (Site Assessment and Brownfields) toward a $100 million project to create an innovation campus on an 89-acre site in Wauwatosa. An additional $12 million in TIF funding was provided by the city. The grant facilitated cleanup of the site of a former hospital and children’s home on which foundry sand was discovered. EPA funds were also used in the project. Today, the site includes an innovation accelerator, office space and a hotel.
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Royster Clark, Madison

Royster Clark, Madison

The vacant 27-acre Royster Clark property was assembled and targeted for a mixed-use development. Remediation costs for the former fertilizer manufacturing site were in excess of $4 million, including demolition of structures and extensive soil work. WEDC contributed $400,000 toward these costs. The project later received an additional $534,000 in Idle Sites Redevelopment Grant funding as part of the $50 million development phase.
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Sheboygan Falls

Sheboygan Falls

The Sheboygan Falls Main Street Program began in December 1988, when it was named one of the first five pilot Main Street programs in the state of Wisconsin. At this time, only three buildings in downtown Sheboygan Falls had been renovated, and many stood vacant. However, the actual push for downtown revitalization had begun nearly 15 years earlier, when a few passionate individuals formed a Sheboygan Falls historic preservation group out of the Sheboygan County Landmarks Association. Two separate historic districts were created as a result of this effort. The community effort to launch the program resulted in significant private sector investment, as local property improvements totaled more than $3.6 million in the program’s fifth year after steady year-over-year improvements. Early successes included the Brickner Woolen Mill Apartments, which was a successful $3.3 million adaptive reuse project to create affordable housing units along the river downtown. Projects like this, along with many individual business examples, paved the way for the Brickner Square project and 1878 Broadway redevelopment, which both resulted from local investors pooling funds to purchase and restore long-vacant properties. Bemis Manufacturing was an early investor, leading by example through renovations of a downtown showroom facility, but also providing $15,000 in seed funding toward a revolving loan pool for other downtown property owners. Early activities also set the stage for community-oriented and family-friendly events such as the Ducktona 500, which has grown to attract 8,000 annual attendees. Today, Sheboygan Falls is one of Wisconsin’s successful Chamber-Main Street organizations, a model made possible when the larger business community recognizes that the health of the downtown center is a reflection of overall economic opportunity. Sheboygan Falls has won more than 40 statewide Main Street awards in virtually every category offered. The program is especially recognized for its well-preserved historic architecture and successful community-wide partnerships designed to engage the City, business community, civic organizations and residents to preserve and promote a strong and vibrant local community while retaining its quintessential small-town charm.
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Sweetwater Apartments, Milwaukee

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.
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Zander Creamery, Cross Plains

Zander Creamery, Cross Plains

WEDC contributed $6,225 in a Site Assessment Grant for the former Zander Creamery property, which had been vacant for more than a decade. The information from the assessment allowed for the successful redevelopment of the site, which was awarded an additional $288,130 in Brownfields Grant funding from WEDC for remediation costs (primarily cleanup of soil contaminated with arsenic, lead and petroleum) as part of the project. The final project resulted in a three-story, 45-unit apartment building, and represented $4.6 million in private investment, with additional city investment of $1.1 million.
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Downtown Mall Site, Stevens Point

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.
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Bancroft Dairy, Madison

Bancroft Dairy, Madison

WEDC contributed $459,529 toward a $31 million redevelopment project including housing, retail and a health care facility on the former Bancroft Dairy site. The dairy plant had closed 10 years prior, and the 1.64-acre site had residual soil contamination, which required disposal and capping.
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Mosinee

Mosinee

One of the original Connect Communities applicants, downtown Mosinee was facing a number of challenges including multiple vacancies and an unremarkable downtown streetscape. In the past three years, the city has led the way by creating a downtown TIF district and building improvement grant program, which has resulted in six property improvement projects. The city also took the lead in improving downtown aesthetics through adding new street banners, hanging flower baskets and creating a downtown playground, and is working on a trail extension. The business community has also come together for some marketing initiatives, including a promotional video series highlighting local shopping and dining options.
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Grafton Lumberyard, Grafton

Grafton Lumberyard, Grafton

WEDC contributed $336,815 toward a $17 million project to clean and redevelop a 4.6-acre site in Grafton. A former lumberyard, printing company and auto repair site had resulted in various types of contamination including PAH, PCB, arsenic and PCE, requiring a mix of disposal and capping. The village worked for a decade to assemble the 13 properties and address remediation needs for the entire corridor. Following cleanup and an RFP, the village transferred property to a developer for 72 apartments and 10,000 square feet of commercial space. Anticipated future phases include additional retail, office and market-rate residential.
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