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September 2014


Oconomowoc council support behind Rockwell plan

Discussions and planning will continue on the new proposal for the mixed-use Rockwell Development downtown.

The majority of City of Oconomowoc Common Council voted to approve a preliminary agreement for the city to finance $6 million to get the long-delayed project off the ground. The agreement comes with strict stipulations the developer has 70 percent of units sold prior to construction and money paid down on condos that would not be refundable.

A new plan was made public last week between Rockwell and the city to move the project from its original St. Paul and Pleasant streets location downtown to front Fowler Lake. The Fowler Lake frontage is currently a city owned parking lot.

If the agreement is approved, the city will take over the former Rockwell site and use it to create the parking lost by the trade. The 38-unit condominium and commercial Rockwell development would move to the lot creating what city officials are calling a win-win that enhances the Fowler lakefront.

Concerns have been raised about parking, public access to the lake and the vitality of the project among other things. Mayor Jim Daley said the approval Tuesday night was basically an agreement to continue discussions with Rockwell and formulate an official developer's agreement.

The developer did explain the public access to the lake would continue and be enhanced in their "live-work" development they said is to compare to the Third Ward in downtown Milwaukee.

Watch for more on this story in Thursday's Oconomowoc Focus.

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