HARTFORD — The
city’s Plan Commission unanimously approved a request for a
conditional use permit Monday night from Broan-Nutone that would
allow a proposed 136,000-square-foot expansion of the company’s
needs the permit so the new building can be 48 feet tall. City
regulations only allow structures to be a maximum of 35 feet tall in
the industrial park for reasons of fire control. The CUP needs final
approval from the Common Council.
was tempered with comments to city officials by Jeff Mueller, group
president for Broan-Nutone. He said the company was only seeking the
CUP so it could gather cost estimates for the project, which is not
yet a done deal, until a long-sought-after truck reliever route
around the city’s downtown is approved.
“I need to be
very clear that we will not expand our current location, go beyond
planning, or put a single shovel in the ground in Hartford unless
there is an approved plan for the reliever route,” Mueller said in
an email to City Planner Justin Drew. “I will move distribution
before I make the decision to move another 350 trucks a day through
Mueller said in
the email adding more trucks to the already congested downtown
traffic “would negatively impact the safety and livability of the
community where 43 percent of our associates live.”
the company is out of capacity for shipping and logistics at the
“We need to
advance the cost estimates and option recommendations in an
expedient way so that I can present options to my board of directors
in the event that the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning
Commission recommendation in June goes one way or the other,”
The company has
said earlier the expansion would mean more jobs at the Hartford
facility, but no number was given.
Drew told the
commission the addition would be built on the northeast side of the
company’s property, across Wacker Drive from Woodlawn Union Park.
height is requested to maximize the efficiency of the warehouse
space,” Drew said.
In April the
commission endorsed and the Common Council approved an ordinance
amending the zoning code to allow buildings in manufacturing
districts to exceed the 35-foot height restriction as a conditional
use after review by the Plan Commission.
the city to make decisions on building heights in industrial areas
based upon building- height water pressure studies, the proximity of
residential properties, the heights of surrounding buildings and the
proximity of fire hydrants,” Drew said.
also recommended approval to the Common Council of Broan-Nutone’s
site plan for the project.
member and Alderman Wayne Rusniak commended the company on the
design of the proposed structure.
“I think this
is the finest design I’ve ever seen presented to the city for the
building of a new warehouse,” Rusniak said. “Most of the other
buildings look like warehouses, but this design will blend in with
calls for 14 loading docks on the east side of the building. Drew
said all of the loading docks are set back more than 100 feet from
the adjacent street.
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