The Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons opened Monday.
It is one of the first significant 21st Century building
projects for Milwaukee and has reshaped the city’s
MILWAUKEE — What started as
an abstract building of steel rising upward
from the downtown Milwaukee skyline
eventually became the towering 32-story
Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons, which
opened to employees on Monday.
After nearly three years of
construction, the glass office building has
1.1 million square feet of office space
designed for innovation and collaboration.
It was designed by Pickard Chilton and led
by principal Jon Pickard FAIA, RIBA.
“With its sleek glass
exterior and innovative work environment,
our Tower and Commons building represents
our transformation — from being the best
life insurance company to being the best
financial security company,” said John E.
Schlifske, chairman and CEO of Northwestern
Mutual, in a statement. “Our new building
will help us meet the multiple financial
needs of clients for decades to come.”
Construction on the
Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons began
in fall 2014. Once all employees move into
the building from the company’s other
locations in downtown Milwaukee and in
Franklin, there will be 2,400 people working
“Our new building
demonstrates our confidence in the future of
Northwestern Mutual,” Schlifske said.
“Everything about it is designed to help
employees collaborate and innovate to
deliver greater value to our clients. We
also look forward to attracting and
retaining the talent we need to grow.”
The Fitness Center is
available to all Northwestern Mutual employees and
includes more than 40 pieces of new cardio equipment,
strength training equipment, weights, two group fitness
rooms, a spin studio and locker rooms.
The Northwestern Mutual
Gardens includes three acres of landscaped green space,
walkways and seating on the south side of The Tower and
Commons and is open to the public.
In recent years, Northwestern
Mutual has reported record growth and
continues to update its business model so it
meets it changing clients’ needs, according
to the announcement. The company is also
focused on helping its hometown of
During the construction
process, more than 2,600 individuals worked
on the building, including about 1,200 city
residents who were previously unemployed or
underemployed. Northwestern Mutual also
strove to hire local small business
enterprises, which included minority-owned,
women-owned and military-veteran-owned
businesses for the work.
The top of the tower on the 32nd floor is open to all
employees and offers outstanding views of Milwaukee and
Northwestern Mutual also
sought to beautify the city by incorporating
the Northwestern Mutual Gardens into the
project, which offer nearly three acres of
landscaped green space, walkways and seating
areas — and they are open to the public. The
building’s first floor Commons hosts a
Starbucks, where the public can purchase
beverages and food.
To learn more about
Northwestern Mutual visit