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Park East office building for Hammes HQ gains another city endorsement

A five-story Park East office building that will house developer Hammes Co.’sheadquarters gained a unanimous endorsement and friendly reception at a Milwaukee Common Council committee meeting Monday.

The building at East Knapp and North Water streets is valued at $27 million, and is expected to be completed in early 2018. Hammes Co. of Brookfield is developing it, and would move 80 employees to its top two floors.

A rendering of the first phase of the project, showing a car court accessible off Water… more

Hammes is seeking office tenants for two more floors. The first floor will have 14-foot-tall windows opening onto Water Streets sidewalks, and space possibility for stores or restaurants. The project also includes a 360-stall parking structure that would face North Market Street on the back end of the building.

The proposal drew some criticism earlier this month at a Plan Commission meeting for its classical architectural design. Two critics at that meeting said the designs call to mind an era with less inclusiveness.

Speaking Monday to aldermen, Eric Amtmann of the building’s architecture firm said the design is inspired by classic American history, and influenced by Greek and Roman styles.

“That type of architecture is based in principles of democratic and republican government, justice, rule of law, liberty, due process,” Amtmann said. “All of those principles and ideals are inherently American, so that’s the interest here.”

Amtmann is principal of Dalgiesh Gilpin Paxton Architects of Virginia, a firm that specializes in that classical style. He said the firm sees a resurgence in this form of design, and has done projects in Texas, Montana and Kentucky.

Milwaukee’s Zoning, Neighborhoods and Development Committee on Monday endorsed the development, sending it to the full Common Council for a vote on Tuesday. The concerns raised earlier this month were not echoed during that meeting, however Ald. Nik Kovac said he has received several letters from people who did not appreciate the style....

For the full article, visit Milwaukee Business Journal