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Foxconn to Buy 133,000 Square Foot Building in Downtown Milwaukee

NOW: Foxconn to Buy 133,000 Square Foot Building in Downtown Milwaukee

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Foxconn plans to buy a building in downtown Milwaukee that has enough space for potentially hundreds of employees.

Northwestern Mutual owns the nearly 133,000 square foot building at 611 East Wisconsin Avenue and currently occupies the space. They announced the sale Monday in a statement.

"With the opening of our Tower and Commons last summer, our workforce has settled into new workspaces across our inter-connected downtown campus, and our building located at 611 E. Wisconsin Avenue is no longer needed," the statement reads.

"Our Real Estate Investment team has a signed letter of intent to sell the office building to Foxconn. We welcome our new neighbor to downtown Milwaukee," the statement concludes.

William Bonifas, Executive Vice President at C.B.R.E, was not involved in the deal but he has a lot of experience in downtown real estate. He says the sale sounds like great news.

"Well it sure solidifies to me that this Foxconn deal is going to happen. We all assume it is, but when you're looking at a commitment this large in the Central Business District, it makes me ever more confident that things will progress," Bonifas said.

Michael Dorner, Economic Development Director for Milwaukee Downtown, says the deal is good for the commercial real estate market - but there will also be a ripple effect.

"Adding these jobs also has a positive impact on the housing market. It also has a positive impact on the hospitality market that can continue to fill hotel rooms for business visitors, etc. It has a positive impact on our restauranteurs," Dorner said.

The sale price of the building has not been released. However, the property was previously assessed for $11.5 million.

"It seems to be very fortuitous to everyone and this isn't just a building. It's a block. So there is a large parking lot to the Southern end of it. So they could obviously continue to use that for parking," Bonifas said.

"But it could also - at some point - be developed if they chose to do that," Bonifas said.

Foxconn has not said anything about what exactly their intentions are with the building but more details are expected during a Tuesday news conference. Governor Scott Walker is expected to attend.

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