Developer’s, joint venture agreements set for The Corners development
Groundbreaking set for spring, opening for fall 2016

By Katherine Michalets - Special to The Freeman

Feb. 19, 2015

TOWN OF BROOKFIELD — The excitement was evident in Town Administrator Rick Czopp’s voice Wednesday afternoon as contracts were being finalized for The Corners, the long-awaited and delayed upscale retail and residential development planned for 19 acres near the intersection near Bluemound and Barker roads.

After the Town Board held a closed session during its meeting Wednesday, the supervisors approved a developer’s agreement with The Marcus Corporation. Also on Wednesday, Marcus Corporation said it had entered a joint venture agreement with IM Properties and Bradford Real Estate to lead the project valued at close to $200 million. IM Properties and Bradford will serve as the managing member in the joint venture and The Marcus Corporation will remain as a partner in the joint venture, according to an announcement.

It was also revealed Wednesday that demolition of the vacant Menards building on The Corners site will begin in the coming weeks and a formal groundbreaking is planned for the spring. The target completion date for the 750,000-square-foot upscale retail center is fall 2016. Also included in the project is a Von Maur department store, luxury apartments and restaurants.

“As we have previously disclosed, it was always our intent to bring in a majority equity partner for this project. We knew that transitioning The Corners to an experienced equity partner and a Midwest real estate developer with deep retail expertise would speed the project timeline and ensure the best possible finished product,” said Gregory S. Marcus, president and chief executive officer of The Marcus Corporation, in a statement.

“We are extremely proud of the efforts of our team and the investments we have made to make our vision for The Corners a reality. I’m confident that The Corners is on track to becoming a true destination in southeastern Wisconsin that will spark new economic development opportunities in Brookfield and the surrounding areas. We are pleased to remain an investor in the joint venture.”

During the day Wednesday, Czopp said the approval of the developer’s agreement is good news not only for the Town of Brookfield, but for the region.

In December, the Town Board approved tax incremental financing for The Corners project in the amount of almost $38 million. Marcus Corporation has projected that a total of $186 million in new taxable value will be created within the TIF district, according to a 2014 memo, as a result of The Corners.

The remainder of financing for the project will come from a mix of balance sheet equity from IM Properties, land from The Marcus Corporation and future construction loan commitments that are being negotiated, according to the announcement.

Design architect DDG is finalizing the plans for The Corners, with a general contractor expected to be named later this spring. Newly-merged CBRE/UCR has been retained to manage retail leasing for the upscale development.

“We are excited to be opening our first Wisconsin store at such a top-tier, upscale location like The Corners,” said Jim von Maur, president of Von Maur Department Stores, whose 140,000-square-foot store will anchor the development.

The Corners is expected to create more than 1,100 permanent new retail jobs and more than 325 temporary construction jobs. According to the announcement, the Town of Brookfield conducted an independent assessment and estimates the development will generate annual sales tax revenue of more than $8 million based on $157 million in total annual retail and restaurant sales.

“The investment by local, regional and international players in The Corners project really speaks to the attractive location, growth opportunities and strong pace of economic development in the Town of Brookfield. We are very pleased to have reached an agreement to move this project forward and to work with this team to develop a showcase property that will be known statewide,” said Keith Henderson, chairman of the Town of Brookfield, in a statement.

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