First building at UWM's Tosa development could begin work this year

Published on: 5/13/2010

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's plans to create a science research campus and tech-oriented business park in Wauwatosa could be getting a jump start.

UWM's application for a $3.5 million federal grant tied to the development, known as Innovation Park, has been "favorably received," although no final decision has been issued yet, said David Gilbert, president of the UWM Real Estate Foundation.

That grant would be used to help fund construction of a two-story, 40,000-square-foot building at Innovation Park. The development is planned for the Milwaukee County Grounds, east of Highway 45 and north of W. Watertown Plank Road.

That building would house both UWM research functions, and private businesses, said Michael Lovell, dean of UWM's College of Engineering and Applied Science. Lovell said executives from several firms, including a bio-technology start-up, have approached university officials about being in the building.

Lovell and Gilbert spoke Thursday at a meeting of the Wisconsin Innovation Network.

The Wauwatosa Common Council last week approved zoning and a preliminary master plan for Innovation Park. An affiliate of the UWM Real Estate Foundation plans to complete its purchase of the land from Milwaukee County by Sept. 1.

Gilbert said construction of the building could begin shortly after the land is purchased.