Downtown Hardee's site without offers after Mad Rooster ended deal

By Hannah Weikel - Freeman Staff

June 30, 2017

WAUKESHA - With the owner of the Mad Rooster Cafe sentenced to more than a year in prison for tax fraud, the business' plan to move into the former Hardee's site downtown is dead in the water, a property manager said Thursday.

Several other restaurant owners have expressed interested in the site, owned by Berg Management, but none have offered formal proposals since plans fizzled out with Mad Rooster's owner Andreas Bouraxis last summer, said Rosie Strauss, Berg Management commercial property manager.

Last July, Bouraxis admitted conspiring to defraud the United States by impeding the Internal Revenue Service - the same day Mad Rooster gained final approval from Waukesha's Plan Commission - in connection with operating his family's three restaurants in the Milwaukee area. His father, mother and brother-in-law were also indicted.

At the time, Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly said Bouraxis' conviction didn't change the city's decision to welcome a Mad Rooster downtown.

But the lot remains vacant after the family backed down on the 130 N.W. Barstow St. property, citing financial issues, Strauss said.

The 4,511 square foot building, along with a large parking lot - currently rented to Wisconsin Department of Transportation offices across the street - costs $4,000 per month and the leasee would be responsible for taxes, property insurance and utilities, Strauss said.

It has been on the market for three years.