Brookfield evaluates demand for apartments

By Katherine Michalets - Freeman Staff

Nov. 27, 2015

BROOKFIELD - Like many communities in Waukesha County, Brookfield has received an increased number of applications for the development of apartments.

To determine what kind of market there is for apartment units in the city, Brookfield hired Gruen Gruen + Associates to conduct an evaluation.

According to city documents, to complete the evaluation and forecast, GG+A staff inspected existing apartment projects and conducted interviews with leasing agents, property managers, and developers.

The study found that while Brookfield has experienced a small population decline since the 2010 census, it has had a growing number of residents living in rental housing. Renters comprised 7.2 percent of Brookfield’s population in 2000 and grew to more than 12 percent of the population in 2013, according to the report.

Brookfield has nearly 1,200 apartment units in existing market-rate projects (non-age-restricted), according to the report. More than 50 percent of Brookfield’s apartment supply has been built since 2000, and since 2012, nearly 300 apartment units have been built in the city.

In addition, apartment vacancy rates in the Brookfield and New Berlin submarket have been consistently lower than the overall metro Milwaukee market, according to the report, at 1.7 percent in 2013.

When considering the apartment projects under construction or already approved, the supply will increase by more than 400 units. With the addition of the two newest projects in Brookfield built in 2014 and 2015, plus the future supply of more than 400 units, Brookfield will contain nearly 2,700 rental housing units.

A presentation on the consultant’s findings will be given during the 7:45 p.m. Common Council meeting Tuesday at City Hall, 2000 N. Calhoun Road.