Proposed Corridor development advances in Brookfield
CDA recommends directing $7.55 million in public TIF dollars toward project

By Dave Fidlin - Special to The Freeman

Jan. 28, 2015

An aerial view of the proposed The Corridor project.   
Submitted rendering

BROOKFIELD - Plans for a proposed mixed-use development on 65 acres of long-dormant land are picking up steam, following a decision Tuesday by a city panel.

After meeting in closed session for nearly an hour with Dan Ertl, community development director, the city’s Community Development Authority voted unanimously in favor of creating a fifth tax incremental financing district.

The CDA in its recommended motion voted to allocate $7,550,000 in public funding toward The Corridor, a project pitched as a home for retail, office, medical buildings and restaurants on the former Ruby Farms and other property.

The Corridor is being spearheaded by Milwaukee-based developer Mark Irgens on land north of Interstate 94, west of Calhoun Road and south of Bluemound Road.

The CDA’s motion sets the stage for the additional steps that must be taken before dirt can be pushed and the project is brought to fruition.

 The Common Council will ultimately have the final say in whether TIF dollars should be allocated toward The Corridor, and a public hearing will be held in February to formally solicit public feedback.

Alderman Jeffrey McCarthy, who sits on the CDA, made the motion to provide the $7.55 million in TIF dollars for the first phase of improvements to the site. Additionally, the CDA is proposing a contribution toward all financing costs associated with getting the development up and running.

But Irgens will be responsible for any additional costs, including actual construction of the phase-one improvements and any off-site costs.

The CDA’s motion came on the heels of a report from a city-hired consultant, S.B. Friedman & Company, which reviewed Irgens’ request for the public TIF dollars.

In their report, Friedman officials anticipated the total TIF-related costs for The Corridor development clock in at $12.1 million after taking into account such factors as capitalized interest, costs of borrowing and debt insurance costs.

Friedman also asserted The Corridor could bring an additional $49 million onto the city’s tax base.

Mayor Steve Ponto is among the city officials who have backed the project.

“The Ruby Farm land is the prime undeveloped commercial property in the city of Brookfield,” Ponto said in a statement. “We are committed to working collaboratively with Irgens to make this development one of the premier developments in the Milwaukee metropolitan area.”