OCONOMOWOC — It
is an area of the city that includes low-rise to mid-rise buildings,
historic buildings with an array of architectural styles and a range
of property classifications.
While nothing is
expected to change immediately, Oconomowoc officials are focused on
a stretch of East Wisconsin Avenue, from the Highway 67 bypass west
to Concord Road — particularly when future redevelopment projects
bubble to the surface.
zoning administrator, and Kristi Weber, community development
specialist, hosted a public information meeting Monday, offering the
approximately dozen attendees a glimpse into what city officials are
considering for a stretch of a major thoroughfare that encompasses
at what we can do to improve,” Weber said. “It’s the look and the
feel and the image of this corridor.”
Gallo and Weber
discussed possible ordinance language that could help in giving the
area under scrutiny a more cohesive look in the future.
“This area of
Wisconsin Avenue doesn’t seem to have any continuity,” Weber said.
“We’re exploring opportunities to create a defined gateway to
downtown. We want to say, ‘Welcome to Oconomowoc. This is what we
look like.’” Although no specifics are on the table, Weber said the
ordinance could bear fruit in the near future.
One area ripe
for redevelopment within the corridor of scrutiny is a long dormant
building at 630 E. Wisconsin Ave., which formerly housed a Sentry
Foods operation. Elsewhere in the area, the city is considering the
potential annexation of town property to the east.
one part of the city’s emphasis on the East Wisconsin Avenue
Gallo said it is
an important stretch of the city that contains $32 million in
assessed valuation and encompasses 56 acres of property — 45 acres
if roads are removed from the equation.
are adamant no changes will be required at existing properties. But
if the Common Council ultimately adopts the ordinance, Gallo said,
future provisions would be in place as specific properties are
requirements and building height limits are among some of the ways
city officials are looking to have more parameters in place for
“We feel this
area — the gateway — should have some green space required,” Gallo
said, pointing out some properties within the area do not currently
have any. “The current regulations are not appropriate for this
area. We would like to create standards for these 60 properties.”
As with any
section of the city, Gallo said it also is important to have in
place a clearly defined set of guidelines so developers know of the
“It’s helpful to
have a blueprint for the developer,” Gallo said.
ordinance is adopted, city officials will go through several steps,
the next being a pair of formal public hearings.
hearing will take place at a Plan Commission meeting Dec. 13; the
second at a Common Council meeting Dec. 19. If all goes as
anticipated, Gallo said, the council will vote on the ordinance in
A draft version
of the ordinance can be viewed on the city’s website at