Kalan Haywood planning $75 million redevelopment of former Sears site in central city

Could include boutique hotel, offices, market-rate housing and public market

Milwaukee developer Kalan Haywood is planning a multi-phase $75 million development at the former Sears store building in Milwaukee’s central city that includes a boutique hotel, offices and market-rate housing.

The redevelopment concept at the sprawling 6.5-acre parcel at 2100 W. North Ave. would be financed with multiple sources, including a possible tax increment financing district provided by the city, said Haywood, president of Haywood Group LLC.

If successful, Haywood’s redevelopment could be a catalyst for redevelopment of the neighborhood, which is only a four-minute drive from the new $524 million Milwaukee Bucks arena, but has struggled with poverty.

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Since purchasing the three-story, 216,000-square-foot building for $1.5 million in February, Haywood has been meeting with community members to seek input about what would best fit in the neighborhood.

About 24 tenants also had to be relocated, he said.

“It took a while to get to this point,” Haywood said. “We have been exploring what is there now and what could attract dollars to (West Fond Du Lac Avenue and West North Avenue) and give people jobs. One concept was the hotel.”

The first phase of Haywood’s project will be a 90-room boutique hotel similar to Hotel Metro or the Iron Horse Hotel, he said. It will include a restaurant and rooftop deck. The hotel will include four conference rooms ranging in size from 4,500 square feet to 10,000 square feet, Haywood said.

Haywood also plans to construct an 800- to 1,000-spot parking structure adjacent to the hotel, west of the Sears building.

He has been meeting with city officials on the project to discuss financing for the initial phase, which will cost $50 million. Rocky Marcoux, commissioner for the Department of City Development, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Haywood anticipates several sources of capital for the project. When he converted the Germania Building in downtown Milwaukee from offices to apartments, the project had 10 sources of capital, including a TIF.

Haywood said community members have also reached out and asked to be a part of the development.

“I haven’t used outside investors in the past, but the community wants to be part of the deal,” Haywood said. “I’m exploring how to allow them to be investors. We will be super creative on financing.”

Phase two, which is still conceptual, would include a mixture of office buildings and approximately 40 market-rate housing. Haywood is also considering a north side public market that would mimic the Milwaukee Public Market in the Historic Third Ward.

The site would include green space for walking and a possible small miniature golf course for hotel residents and conference center attendees.

Phase two will cost approximately $25 million, Haywood said.

“I told the mayor I want him to have the State of the City address at the hotel in 2020, but that might be wishful thinking,” Haywood said.

Milwaukee developer Kalan Haywood is planning a multi-phase $75 million development at the former Sears store building in Milwaukee’s central city that includes a boutique hotel, offices and market-rate housing.

The redevelopment concept at the sprawling 6.5-acre parcel at 2100 W. North Ave. would be financed with multiple sources, including a possible tax increment financing district provided by the city, said Haywood, president of Haywood Group LLC.

If successful, Haywood’s redevelopment could be a catalyst for redevelopment of the neighborhood, which is only a four-minute drive from the new $524 million Milwaukee Bucks arena, but has struggled with poverty.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Since purchasing the three-story, 216,000-square-foot building for $1.5 million in February, Haywood has been meeting with community members to seek input about what would best fit in the neighborhood.

About 24 tenants also had to be relocated, he said.

“It took a while to get to this point,” Haywood said. “We have been exploring what is there now and what could attract dollars to (West Fond Du Lac Avenue and West North Avenue) and give people jobs. One concept was the hotel.”

The first phase of Haywood’s project will be a 90-room boutique hotel similar to Hotel Metro or the Iron Horse Hotel, he said. It will include a restaurant and rooftop deck. The hotel will include four conference rooms ranging in size from 4,500 square feet to 10,000 square feet, Haywood said.

Haywood also plans to construct an 800- to 1,000-spot parking structure adjacent to the hotel, west of the Sears building.

He has been meeting with city officials on the project to discuss financing for the initial phase, which will cost $50 million. Rocky Marcoux, commissioner for the Department of City Development, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Haywood anticipates several sources of capital for the project. When he converted the Germania Building in downtown Milwaukee from offices to apartments, the project had 10 sources of capital, including a TIF.

Haywood said community members have also reached out and asked to be a part of the development.

“I haven’t used outside investors in the past, but the community wants to be part of the deal,” Haywood said. “I’m exploring how to allow them to be investors. We will be super creative on financing.”

Phase two, which is still conceptual, would include a mixture of office buildings and approximately 40 market-rate housing. Haywood is also considering a north side public market that would mimic the Milwaukee Public Market in the Historic Third Ward.

The site would include green space for walking and a possible small miniature golf course for hotel residents and conference center attendees.

Phase two will cost approximately $25 million, Haywood said.

“I told the mayor I want him to have the State of the City address at the hotel in 2020, but that might be wishful thinking,” Haywood said.

Comments

  1. David Livingston says:

    Here’s how this works. You get the city to put in all the cash. Then the money starts going to the LLC project. Someone has to collect a salary right? And the other employees. Then you hire friends to be all the contractors. They need a little upfront money to get started. Soon the costs are “more than expected”. Then delays. No worries, maybe get an old retired Packer to show up and assure everyone that everything is beautiful. And that hotel? If it does get built it will become the No-tel motel like you see on 8 mile Road in Detroit.. I could be wrong. But I’m not.

  2. David Livingston says:

    We all know this is never going to happen. Most people are too scared to even read about this location let alone actually go to it. There is no way this developer has this kind of cash. They will need to use tax money to do it and most of that will just end up in the pockets of all the make-work jobs it will create.

  3. i think the concept will work and it will create jobs for the community. The plan is well thoughtout, im positive he has planned for a few bumps however the concept makes sense. invest in your community i wish i had the capitol to invest..

  4. Micah Roschke says:

    Love the enthusiasm and the desire to invest in our central city. With that said, I cannot see this working. When people go to a boutique hotel, they don’t want to be in the midst of the hood where you legit can’t and wouldn’t leave the property to walk around unless maybe you were going to the Fondy Market on a Saturday morning. Good intentions doesn’t always = smart. I can’t ever see this happening….but if it does, I hope it succeeds! I just don’t think it will.

    • The Hood says:

      Micah,
      First of all, we know the mayor and police aren’t going to let anything happen to all the hipster white ppl that will stay at this boutique hotel. Secondly, the more important point is that your way of thinking is what segregated this city in the first place. The hood wouldn’t be a hood if we had better resources and learning tools, poverty equals violence. you sound smart, Micah. You should know this…
      Gentrification at its finest so trust me the HOOD won’t be able to afford to be there any more so you can rest assure that you can take a walk to the HOOD Fondy market any day you want…

      • Micah Roschke says:

        My “way of thinking” is just reality. I want our inner city to improve. And yes, economic investment plays a part in that…but all I am saying is throwing money to develop buildings doesn’t usually equate to any type of turnaround for the community. Nor outsiders go there if things around the development don’t change. I grew up on North Ave just a couple blocks away. Back in the late-90’s and early 2000’s, storefronts were cleaned up, businesses started moving in….and NOTHING improved. There were various reasons for this – including crappy management, lack of parking, vandalism – but the biggest reason is because people (aka the nearby residents) didn’t choose to support the businesses. I agree that gentrification isn’t ideal. But just keeping things the same isn’t working either. Again, I applaud this developer in trying to do something to improve the area…I just don’t see this working out.