8 Stoughton Courier Hub - Stoughton Focus - June 28, 2018
2018 Inside Highway Trailer progress Page 9 Public works facility, whitewater park plans Page 10 Nordic Ridge housing, splash pad opens Page 11 School district partners with city Page 12 New business questionnaires Page 13 Growth at KPW Page 14
June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
Riverfront makes progress BILL LIVICK
Council and the RDA surfaced over whether to preserve a 110-year-old former industrial complex known as Highway Trailer. The RDA voted to demolish the complex in March 2017, but a week later the council enacted a moratorium on demolishing buildings is historic districts. The following month, it removed the Highway Trailer complex from the moratorium except for a architecturally significant structure known as the blacksmith shop. After last summer’s public visioning forum, known as a design charrette, the RDA’s master developer, Appleton-based Tanesay, withdrew its involvement, citing “indecision” by the city over what it wants for the area. Amid the political debates over saving all or part of the Highway Trailer complex, the RDA worked on ways to move the project forward with or without that complex included. The group, which turned over several members in the past year, created a marketing flyer that touts the city’s assets and the potential of the riverfront area in hopes of finding another developer for the project. It also began consulting with historic preservation
Unified Newspaper Group
It might not be obvious, but there has been progress in the past year around the Redevelopment Authority’s riverfront redevelopment area. The most visible action has been the demolition of several buildings, including the start of taking down most of the Highway Trailer complex along East South Street. The riverfront project is a roughly 15-acre former industrial area along the Yahara River that’s bordered to the north by East South Street, the east by Seventh Street and the west by South Fourth Street. T h e R DA h a d b e e n acquiring properties there since its inception in 2007 with plans to transform the area with new housing and possibly some retail development. Advocates say the project would enhance the city’s downtown and also mesh nicely with proposed improvements at Mandt Park, which has already seen the installation of new pickleball courts and could have a new building to complement a whitewater park that’s in the planning stages. The riverfront redevelopment stalled for a while last year when a disagreement between the Common
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
East South Street opened this week after being blocked for most of the last year. The street was blocked due to structural concerns at the Highway Trailer complex.
Stoughton Focus 2018 Stoughton saw several commercial and residential developments move forward in the past year, including the start of a new senior living facility and a hotel in Kettle Park West, housing and a park at Nordic Ridge and new businesses both at KPW and downtown. The city also began building a new $8 million public works facility on the east side, made progress with its planning for a riverfront development along East South Street
– mainly in demolishing dilapidated former industrial buildings – and moved ahead in planning for a whitewater park. The public works project will be completed before year’s end, but it’s unclear when the Redevelopment Authority will have a developer to take on the riverfront redevelopment project. If, as expected, a whitewater park development is approved by the city, its construction would likely take place in 2020, said Parks and Rec director Dan Glynn.
Turn to Trailer/Page 14
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June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
Ground work has begun at the site of the new public works facility.
Photo by Amber Levenhagen
City begins building public works facility BILL LIVICK Unified Newspaper Group
A new $8 million public works facility is in the early stages of construction on the city’s east side and is scheduled to be completed this year. The facility has been planned since 2013, when the city began working with a design firm and bought 13 acres on County Hwy. A near the intersection with Racetrack Road. Public works director Brett Hebert told the Hub that despite heavy rainfall this spring, the project is “right on schedule.” He said footings for the main building will be completed in a week or two and wall sections will be delivered in July. “Those will be up by the end of July, and then the
building will really start to take shape,” Hebert said. “We’re very pleased with the progress considering the wet weather,” he added. “It’s a good site for this kind of construction, mostly sand, so it’s draining well and there’s no standing water. We got kind of lucky.” Last June, the Common Council approved a $359,000 contract with the architectural and engineering firm Angus Young Associates, of Janesville, to design and plan the project. And in February, the city accepted a $7.5 million bid from Kenneth F. Sullivan Co. to build the roughly $8 million facility. It will replace a century-old building on Fourth Street that is deteriorating and is too small to meet the public works department’s needs, city officials said.
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
Sullivan is constructing an 82,789 square-foot facility, which includes three buildings. The main building will have an administrative office, vehicle maintenance area, employee break area and a meeting room. The complex will include an attached cold-storage building and a 4,800-square-foot salt storage outbuilding. The project includes a rooftop solar-panel array to provide electricity, at a cost of $217,300. The three buildings at the site will cost $7.28 million to construct, and the city will spend another $1.05 million for soil improvements, site preparation and stormwater maintenance. Contact Bill Livick at bill. email@example.com
Whitewater Park advances BILL LIVICK Unified Newspaper Group
A push to develop a whitewater park on the Ya h a r a R ive r n e a r t h e Fourth Street Dam got closer to reality over the past year. Led by parks and recreation department director Dan Glynn, the city has applied for a major grant, has begun planning meetings with a developer and made a public presentation attended by 100 people at the Opera House in May. Glynn proposed developing a whitewater park last year, between Mandt Park and the riverfront redevelopment project, using the existing dam and several new man-made pools to control the water flow. It would include a beach, a spectator area and a place to rent equipment.
Glynn and park advocates have said they believe the project would draw thousands of visitors to the city each year and generate hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in new revenue for local businesses. In January, the Common Council authorized a $23,100 planning contract with Recreation Engineering and Planning Inc., a company Glynn said is the leading whitewater park developer in the country. The Colorado-based firm estimated the cost to build a park here at $2.2 million. In April, Glynn applied for a Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Knowles-Nelson Stewardship grant, which would pay half the cost of developing the park. He said the city will know by early August whether it’s awarded the funding. “If we get the DNR grant,
we’ll have two construction seasons to finish the project,” he told the Hub. “Next year would be the engineering and permitting phase, and the following year would be the construction.” In the last few months, Glynn has met with various user groups and other city departments to recruit members for a whitewater park steering committee. He said the committee will meet for the first time in July. If the city doesn’t get the DNR funding, Glynn said, it wouldn’t necessarily mean the end of the project. “It’s a big chunk of money and it would slow things down, but I still think the project could move forward,” he said. “We’d have to put together a fundraising plan.” Contact Bill Livick at bill. firstname.lastname@example.org
Message from the mayor
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Optimism is high for continued growth
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My first few months as mayor have been very interesting and educational. Optimism was certainly the theme I heard regarding growth potential at the April 19th Chamber of Commerce Business Expo. Among the priorities since I’ve taken office was opening East South Street, making progress on redevelopment areas and addressing current and future space needs and use for city staff. East South Street had been closed in front of the Highway Trailer building complex, and it opened this week. I received help from the Redevelopment Authority (RDA) chair and vice chair, Roger Springman and Carl Chenoweth, to accelerate this process. An initial meeting was set up with our consultant, and a follow-up meeting occurred onsite with the demolition company to establish a plan to reschedule the order of the demolition of the several buildings in the area. The riverfront development is being addressed in multiple ways. A new tax-incremental district is being created to provide financial flexibility. We are also patiently waiting for decisions to be made regarding grants for both the riverfront and the whitewater park that’s being planned in
front of it. On the other side of the city, the Redevelopment Authority is in conversations with a developer for the former Marathon gas station, and these will hopefully come to fruition. Addressing current and future space needs and use for city staff has been an ongoing topic, and related to this is the donation of the iconic McFarland State Bank building to the City of Stoughton. Other development is continuing. I attended the celebration of the grand opening of the Kwik Trip conversion at Roby Road, the groundbreaking of the new McFarland State Bank at Kettle Park West and the ribbon-cutting for the splash pad at Nordic Ridge. This is the second year of the Parade of Homes at Nordic Ridge. The Pick ‘n Save gas station grand opening is set for June 29. Phase 1 of KPW continues with the construction of the Iconica Assisted Living and McFarland State Bank, opening of the Pancake Cafe, near-completion of the Dunkin’ Donuts and several other possibilities, including the Tru Hotel by Hilton and Great Clips. After securing an access road from Hwy. 138 into KPW, a new
housing proposal for Phase 2 of KPW will be up for review in the near future. Tractor Supply and Goodwill stores filled the vacant Walmart site. Several new shops opened or relocated downtown, including 51 South Restaurant (formerly Pack R Place), Viking Gold and Pawn (formerly The Quill Brush building), Autumn Pearl, Wildwood Cafe, Smokes on the Water, Lon’s Tailgaters (formerly Sonny’s Bar), Viking Leather and Stoughton Sweet Shoppe. Remodeling/additions are occurring at Conant’s Automotive, Dane County Auto, Kunes Country Auto (formally Stark Automotive), the American Legion and Reverend Jim’s. Completion of the addition to Skaalen Home is near. I have attended numerous trainings, dinners and seminars to become engaged with local, county and state representatives, as well as our trade associations. Conversations with the school district continues. Stoughton is poised to provide quality and strategic growth for our present and future needs. Thank you to everyone who have given me help and support. Tim Swadley is the mayor of the City of Stoughton.
June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
Splash pad opens at Nordic Ridge Park After more than a year of planning, the Nordic Ridge Park splash pad opened June 9. The pad was donated to the city by Nordic Ridge developers RHD Properties. The splash pad was part of Phase II in Nordic Ridge, a new neighborhood in the southwest part of the city. The park, located at 1300 Hoel Ave., also features a 3,880-square-foot shelter and a soccer field, to be used primarily by the Stoughton Youth Soccer Association. Regular hours for the park will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day through the summer, contingent on inclement weather. The park was approved in July 2017 by the Planning Commission, and the Common Council approved $154,000 in funding for parts of the project a month later.
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
Oliver Miller, 6, is brought close to the water jets by his older sister Natalie Zientek at the splash Pad a few days after the park opened.
Construction began in fall 2017 and was completed in May. – Amber Levenhagen
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Norse View Heights project still stalled AMBER LEVENHAGEN Unified Newspaper Group
Medical Imaging 608-873-2299
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
While one housing development took big steps forward over the past year, another remains stuck on the ground. Nordic Ridge, located in the southwest part of the city, celebrated the completion of its splash pad late this spring, sending the development further into the next stage of construction (Phase 3), which includes roadwork. D ev e l o p e r s B o b a n d Laura Dvorak oversaw the completion of the splash pad, park and shelter throughout the last year. In the year before that, 40 single- and multi-family lots were developed, and there are plans for 170 lots in
total. All of the two-family lots have been sold at the property. Phase III will extend Hoel Avenue to County Hwy. A, which Laura Dvorak told the Hub earlier this month is supposed to make travel easier for commuters. “(It will) make it easier to get back and forth to Madison,” she said. On the city’s north side, Norse View Heights got some traction this year after a few years of stagnation. Developer A.J. Arnett returned to the Planning Commission in February to receive suggestions for how to get the project going. His preliminary plat for the subdivision was approved in September 2016 with 32 new dwelling units, but several conditions were not met, delaying the project. Planning director Rodney Scheel told the Hub in an email the timeline for one
of the remaining conditions stalling development is “unclear.” “The developer has not submitted the urban service area amendment materials necessary to meet one of the conditions of approval that were placed on the development back in 2016,” he wrote. The cost for the homes, according to the city’s website, range from $225,000 to $260,000. “This development brings high-quality affordable housing to Stoughton… which already has a waiting list for the anticipation of these future lots,” the website states. For information about the status of developments, visit ci.stoughton.wi.us. Contact Amber Levenhagen at amber.levenhagen@ wcinet.com.
Message from the chamber
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Please join us for a: COMMUNITY OPEN HOUSE For more information please contact Tara Heuer, Director Phone: 608.873.5651 Ext 7793 | Email: THeuer@skaalen.com 950 Ridge Street | Stoughton, WI 53589 | www.skaalen.com Skaalen is a Continuum of Care Community – Retirement Condominiums, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing, Memory Care, Skaalen Therapy & Wellness Center (In-patient & Out-patient Therapy Services)
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When I wrote my column for last year’s Stoughton Focus section, I justified our need to grow. I pointed to the fact that we have 6,900 jobs in Stoughton and we are the 64th-largest city in Wisconsin but we cannot stand still. If we don’t grow, we stagnate. Now, a year later, we are seeing real signs of growing. We h ave m o r e r e t a i l options, which means more people are staying in Stoughton or coming to Stoughton to shop. When shoppers come from the surrounding communities, they are likely to spend more in Stoughton, buying gas or having lunch or going to a shop they’ve never been to before. We also are seeing some homes being built, most notably on the north side of the city and in the Nordic Ridge development. New homes bring more tax base and more students to the school district. Although this growth is encouraging, we can do better. For one thing, most of the growth has been on the west
side, which is desirable for some businesses, but we’ve got a great opportunity to balance this growth by putting some emphasis on the east side, as well, which could use more retail. Also, almost all of Stoughton’s recent business growth has been in retail. And that keeps people in town for shopping. But we also need growth in the kind of family-supporting jobs people move here for. Housing is another important opportunity. It’s the carrot that was used to sell the Kettle Park West development. The housing that was supposed to follow has hit roadblocks, I know, but we still need those houses. To accomplish all this, the three pillars of our community – the city, school district and the business community – need to pull together. I am happy to hear Mayor Tim Swadley talk about working with the county for economic development guidance. I know we can acquire more land for development. But without an economic development plan in
place, we will not be able to attract businesses that will entice people to move here. The school district has been very good about telling us it needs more students. But it could show more leadership to keep the city’s shortage of housing in the forefront by attending city council meetings and impressing on the council the very real urgency we are facing. The task force that was created to get these three entities talking – the chamber, SASD and the city – didn’t go anywhere. But instead of researching ways to suggest we market the city, the three entities need to work together on economic development and planning. With the signs of growth we are experiencing and the ways people are talking about working together, I am looking forward to the coming year. With the cooperation of the city, school district and businesses, Stoughton can grow appropriately. Laura Trotter is the executive director of the Stoughton Chamber of Commerce.
June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
City, district focus on growth Leaders, including some newly elected, continue joint discussions SCOTT DE LARUELLE Unified Newspaper Group
For Stoughton’s Common Council and the Stoughton Area school board, the past year was one of both looking to the past and the future as the two sides sought more ways to work together. Since the spring of 2017, the two government bodies have been meeting, both as entire boards and more recently in a combined ad hoc committee, to discuss common issues, challenges and solutions. Mayor Tim Swadley, a former school board member who was part of those efforts in the past year as a council member, said the two sides have been getting along “great” as newly elected members on both sides get ready to join the ongoing discussions. Those have mainly centered around growth. “Obviously the concern is how do we attract more young families to Stoughton for students for schools?” he told the Hub last week. “What is the city’s role, the school district’s role, and what can we do in a partnership?” Swadley said the group has been talking about getting some outside help to put together a marketing plan – “something that would get outside of Stoughton and Dane County, and really even further than that, to try to introduce families that are consider relocating to consider Stoughton.” He said areas like Nordic Ridge are opening up some housing possibilities. “You have to have home opportunities for these families, and in Dane County there’s a housing shortage, so we’re going to try to work together to at least let the school district know
Teaming up Members from the Stoughton Common Council and Stoughton Area School Board met as Committees of the Whole in April 2017, then again in July 2017, where they formed the committee to serve as a liaison between the two bodies, with plans to meet quarterly. if someone contacts them … they are aware of where there might be some housing options.”
New leadership There were some “new” faces in the room June 14 at a meeting between top city and school officials, with some recent changes in leadership in both bodies. Swadley had taken over for Donna Olson as Stoughton mayor (and Common Council president Tom Majewski for Swadley), and Frank Sullivan succeeded Scott Dirks as school board president. Swadley said the session was a good way to catch newcomers up on progress and keep things moving forward. “We have an opportunity to maybe do some things that haven’t been tried in the past and we want to take advantage of that,” he said. “It’s not going to happen overnight; it’s going to be kind of a continuous process, because we all have other responsibilities a than to each other, and we’re trying to balance this within all the other things we’re doing.” Email Unified Newspaper Group reporter Scott De Laruelle at scott. email@example.com.
Message from the superintendent
District embraces creativity to meet student’s needs I recently visited our Fab Lab to see some of the work underway in our Guitars for Girls workshop. In this summer program, girls entering grades 8-12 have an opportunity to build their own solid-body electric guitar while getting exposed to a unique learning experience in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) in our lab. It was amazing to see the skill and creativity of our students. Here at the Stoughton Area School District, we have tried to take that kind of creative spirit to heart because it helps us to meet the changing needs of our students. For example, last school year, Fox Prairie Elementary School staff showed out-of-the-box thinking when they enlisted Gus, a yellow Labrador retriever, to help support students who are reading. Our staff had found from research that dogs can help encourage students to read because they offer a nonjudgmental ear for kids to read aloud and practice their skills. Gus, as you may have heard or seen from media reports, has been a big hit with students and staff. This was an example of great initiative taken by our staff to help meet one our district’s primary goals, which is promoting student literacy. Kegonsa Elementary School has showed similar creative thinking when developing its inquiry-based learning focus over the last year. Inquiry-based
learning emphasizes more interactive learning opportunities, such as outdoor classrooms, and tapping into students’ curiosity about the world. Last year, Kegonsa reimagined its learning spaces to support that philosophy. Its hallways were repainted, new flexible tables were purchased to encourage cooperative work among students and signage was displayed to encourage students to be “Courageously Curious.” Sandhill Elementary School has started incorporating more STEAM opportunities into its classrooms, partly because research has shown students develop 21st - century learning skills by participating in STEAM activities. This last year, Sandhill started organizing monthly STEAM challenges to encourage project-based learning, help students develop problem-solving skills and promote collaboration. The school has already received some donated equipment and continues to seek other partners to expand the program beyond the monthly challenges so it can increase student engagement and science knowledge. And just recently, Sandhill was awarded a $5,000 grant from the Alliant Energy Foundation toward the creation of a new STEAM lab in the building. Every year in May, River Bluff Middle School organizes and hosts a Genius Hour science fair that showcases work by our sixth-graders. In this
activity, students research a topic of their choosing, including topics that would not be covered within the scope of the sixth-grade science curriculum, as long as it has a scientific connection. The students learn about topics that include health and nutrition, sports, genetics, natural disasters, computer coding, pet care and more, and then present what they have learned to families and classmates in the fair. Lastly, Stoughton High School has been reaching out to local businesses to learn more about how we can prepare our students for the workforce. On April 13, teams of educators from SHS used their professional day to visit more than 20 different businesses in the area in fields such as finance, health care, engineering, manufacturing, food service, architecture, hospitality, energy and engineering. Our educators learned more about what those businesses do, what kinds of skills they need from their employees and what kinds of academic or employability skills should our schools emphasize to prepare students for success in their future careers. As we look to a new school year, we are hoping to continue that spirit of creativity in our district so we can prepare our students for the emerging world in which they live. Tim Onsager is the superintendent of the Stoughton Area School District.
Photo courtesy of TKWA
NORWEGIAN HERITAGE CENTER
608.873.7567 www.livsreise.org Livsreise features an exhibit area focusing on the Norwegian immigration to America from around 1825 to 1910. Also, a temporary exhibit area features a quilting exhibit sponsored by Vesterheim Museum; a genealogy center that is directly linked to the Norwegian American Genealogical Center and Naeseth Library in Tuesday Saturday Madison; an interactive map of Norway tracing immigration routes; various vignettes telling the 9:30 am 4:30pm immigration stories, and a small, handicapped accessible, auditorium that will seat 68 people.
277 W. Main St. Stoughton, WI 53589
Free Admission Like us on Facebook
June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
Goodwill Stoughton (Part of Goodwill of South Central Wisconsin) Address: 1780 US-51, Stoughton (next to Pick ‘n Save) Home office is at 1302 Mendota St., Madison Principal owner or leader: Vicki Holschuh is the president and CEO of Goodwill SCWI. Goodwill does not have an owner. Each region operates as an independent, local 501(c)(3) Opening/arrival date: Goodwill Stoughton opened on March 16, 2018. Number of employees: Goodwill Stoughton is a local nonprofit employing approximately 25 full and part-time staff. Goodwill of South Central Wisconsin (SCWI) has 300+ employees within its 14-county region. Charity connections/plans (if any): Goodwill SCWI provides job coaches for people with barriers to employment in collaboration with more than 100 local businesses. We also provide a safe and supportive living environment in our group homes for adults with mental illness. We partner with service organizations to assist their clients in obtaining work essentials. Stoughton connection (why are you here?): Our stores are the economic driver for the mission of Goodwill. When we open a new store, we create additional capacity for local services. Stoughton is a vibrant community and we were pleased to fill an existing retail space that had been vacant for an extended period of time. Business focus (products/services/market/customers): The resale of gently-used goods is what we do, but it is not who we are. Goodwill SCWI believes everyone can work. Proceeds from the resale of donated goods fund the mission services that allow us to support employees in meaningful jobs that encourage their development and increase their independence. What’s special about your business? Goodwill’s commitment to the power of work means your shopping does good for your community. Goodwill SCWI is green – developing multiple streams for recycling and keeping 20 million pounds of waste out of local landfills in 2017. Donated goods, retail proceeds and Goodwill’s services stay in South Central Wisconsin.
Aldi Address: 1399 U.S. Hwy. 51 Opening date: November 2017 Website: aldi.us
Photo by Scott Girard
Smokes on the Water, 233 W. Main St., opened November 27.
First Choice Dental Address: 1300 Nygaard St Principal owner or leader: Rebecca Gray, Clinic Administrator Opening/arrival date: July 17, 2017 Number of employees: 7 employees at the Stoughton location Charity connections/plans (if any): Syttende Mai Sponsor, Bike for Boys & Girls Club Sponsors, and we plan to donate to local youth clubs, sports, etc. Stoughton connection (why are you here?): We felt the need to expand into this great community. Six out of our seven employees live within Stoughton, Oregon, McFarland and Cooksville. We have a vested interest in supporting this community. Business focus (products/services/market/customers): We provide general dental care including cleanings, exams, x-rays, emergency appointments, fillings, same day Cerec crowns, dentures and much more! We also have an orthodontist that practices with us on Thursdays.
Smokes on the Water Address: 233 W Main St Principal owner or leader: Chris Kelley Opening/arrival date: November 2017 Number of employees: 3 Stoughton connection (why are you here?): Our business model calls for small town feeling to provide more personal service and build relationships with customers Business focus (products/services/market/customers): Alternatives to cigarette smoking
Tractor Supply Co. Address: 1800 U.S. Hwy. 51 and Hwy. 138 Opening date: October 2017 Website: tractorsupply.com
Stoughton Sweet Shoppe Address: 603 W. Main St. Opening date: February 2018 Website: stoughtonsweetshoppe.com
Southeast Dane County Sales D O LL AR VO LU M E
Address: 2420 Hwy. 138 Opening date: April 2018 Website: pancakecafe.com
Address: 151 E. Main St. Opening date: April 2018 Website: facebook.com/LonsTailgatersStoughton
Source: MLS Company Statistics – Volume Ranking Closed Properties. All properties closed 01/01/2017-12/31/2017 Southeast Dane County
20M 10M 0
Stark First Company Weber Realtors Group
RE/MAX Century 21 Keller Preferred Affiliated Williams
Matson Restaino Bunbury & Assoc & Assoc & Assoc
51 South Address: 208 W. Main St. Opening date: June 2018 Website: 51-south.business.site
Address: 218 S. Forrest St. Opening date: May 2018 Website: facebook.com/WildwoodStoughton
CK Realty 608-345-0743
Tom Dybevik 608-516-7528
Lisa Fero 920-988-2117
Marjie Hanssen 608-205-3003
Tony Hill 608-695-2565
Kari Manson Hvam 608-516-3758
Jay Spiegel 608-219-0376
Judy Spiegel 608-575-7330
The Stoughton Area Experts Serving Dane, Rock, Green and Jefferson Counties
608-873-8181 • 1609 Hwy 51 & 138 • Stoughton
June 28, 2018
Stoughton Courier Hub
Kettle Park West
Rendering courtesy of Iconica
Construction began in May for the senior living facility at Kettle Park West.
New senior housing construction underway
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
Walls come down at the Highway Trailer complex on East South Street on Friday, June 22.
Trailer: Demolition starts clearing the way Continued from page 9 experts about the possibility of saving the 108-yearold blacksmith shop, which remains under a demolition moratorium. City leaders plan to seek cost estimates for restoring the building at the same time they’re considering potential uses for the 14,000-square-foot structure. A n d R DA c o n s u l t a n t Gary Becker devised a plan to provide more time and financial flexibility, separating the riverfront area from the rest of the tax-increment financing district it was in and creating a new district for the redevelopment project. That plan, which is
expected to go to the Common Council next month, would provide 27 years to generate increment (additional tax base) while also relieving its former district, TID 5, of a $1.8 million decrement (a deficit in the tax base) caused by the reduced value of old industrial buildings. The Common Council has also been active around the riverfront project. In late February, it removed a demolition moratorium on the Highway Trailer complex, except for the blacksmith shop, that was put in place in March 2017. And it authorized up to $750,000 to take down the rest of the complex, a process that
began in May and is expected to be completed by the end of the summer. City officials asked the demolition contractor to have the tallest part of the complex, a building along East South Street, removed by early July in order to re-open the street for July 4 festivities. The street was closed a year ago following a building inspection report that questioned its structural integrity. Other structures in the riverfront area have already been demolished, the MillFab complex and the carpet warehouse. Contact Bill Livick at bill. firstname.lastname@example.org
100 apartments planned AMBER LEVENHAGEN Unified Newspaper Group
Construction at the site of the future Kettle Park West senior housing facility began May 1 and is expected to be completed during the summer of 2019. T h e fa c i l i t y w i l l b e approximately 130,000 square feet and will include 79 independent and assiste d l iv i n g a p a r t m e n t s , according to a news release f r o m d eve l o p e r Tu k k a Properties. There will also be a memory care wing with an additional 21 apartments. T h e fa c i l i t y w i l l b e o p e r a t e d b y Te a lwo o d Senior Living. It’s the two companies’ fourth joint
ground-up project. It was designed by Iconica, an architecture, engineering and construction company based in Madison, which is also managing the construction. Embracing Stoughton’s Scandinavian heritage and downtown is “important to us,” Rachel Pientka, vice president of Operations for Tukka Properties, said in the release. She explained that the exterior design features light colors, Norwegian-style roofs and farmhouse-style porches. The interior will include a bistro and several dining areas, activity spaces, an arts and crafts room, a library, salon, fitness and wellness spaces, as well as a movie theater. Outside areas include a patio, walking paths, raised gardening beds and a putting green. “We are striving to create a place residents find
comforting and fulfilling,” Pientka said in the release. Iconica and Tukka partnered with Henricksen, an interior design firm, to create “an inviting and comfortable environment,” taking inspiration from small Scandinavian villages to come up with the modern farmhouse design, Henricksen director Amy Bursey said in the release. “The Kettle Park project will be light and bright, influence from traditional Norwegian crafts and details inspired by the Scandinavian landscape. We design a lot of senior housing, and we are very excited about the innovative thinking by Iconica, Tukka and Tealwood,” Bursey said. “It is going to be a great community.” Contact Amber Levenhagen at amber.levenhagen@ wcinet.com.
Development continues Bank underway, hotel stalled AMBER LEVENHAGEN Unified Newspaper Group
Photo by Kimberly Wethal
Crews work on East South Street as demolition continues at the Highway Trailers site on Friday, June 22.
As businesses open around Kettle Park West, a few more developments are underway. The Tru by Hilton hotel on Jackson Street construction had planned to begin this summer after a new permit was issued in January, but developers have not yet obtained a building permit from the city. The previously reported May groundbreaking never happened.
The most recent timeline provided to the Hub anticipated construction completion by March 1, 2019. McFarland State Bank held its groundbreaking ceremony April 27, with construction following shortly after. The full-service location, at the corner of US Hwy. 51 and Jackson Street, will replace the former location on South Forrest Street. The city accepted the donation of the existing building, which is expected to be used as a municipal facility. Several businesses are already open at Kettle Park
West. Pancake Cafe, a breakfast restaurant located at 2420 U.S. Hwy. 138, opened in April. It’s the third location for the company, with others in Fitchburg and Madison. Kwik Trip, the fourth in Stoughton, opened September 2017. Aldi, a discount grocery store located at 1399 U.S. Hwy. 51, opened November 2017. Dunkin’ Donuts is expected to open within the next few weeks. – Amber Levenhagen
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