Milwaukee Rep plans to build new $75 million theater complex

Rendering of the entrance to the Associated Bank Theater Center.

Milwaukee Repertory Theater There are plans to build a new $75 million theater complex instead. Patty & Jay Barker Theater Complex At 108 E. Wells St. in downtown Milwaukee. The representative expects to break ground on the project in late 2023.

Like the Patty & J Barker Theater Complex, the new complex will be attached to a 28-story Associated Bank River Center Office Tower. Associated Bank today announced a 20-year, $10 million sponsorship for Milwaukee Rep.’s new theater complex, which will be named the Associated Bank Theater Center by 2042.

“The Milwaukee Representative has been a cornerstone of Milwaukee’s cultural heritage for nearly 70 years. We are proud of their mission and our mission to make Milwaukee a more livable place to live and work,” said Associated Bank President and CEO Andy Harning. Couldn’t be more proud to provide a lasting commitment.”

In February 2020, the Milwaukee representative said it was Planning for expansion and renovation of 30,000 square feet Patty & J Barker Theater Complex K. A report analyzing the premises indicated that the representative had outgrown the facility and that an upgrade of the infrastructure was required. Rep complex, which includes a redeveloped former power generation plant, in 1987. Rep’s complex consists of three theaters: the Quadrasi Powerhouse, the Steimke Studio and the Stackner Cabaret; With rehearsal facilities, production shops and administrative offices.

But now the Milwaukee representative is planning to build a new campus in its place. According to a news release, its board of trustees “unanimously approved plans to remain at its current location and build an entirely new, expanded campus with state-of-the-art theaters, abundant community gathering spaces, expanding students An education center for programming, and modern audience facilities.”

As part of the project, all three of The Rap’s theaters will be refurbished so that they are compatible with theaters across the US, which will allow The Rap to host touring productions.

“Within the historic building itself, everything inside the building will be completely redone to the original,” said Chad Bauman, executive director of Milwaukee Rep. “The four walls will remain standing, but everything else will be redone.”

Delegates will also build a new glass entryway structure along Wells Street to welcome visitors into its main entrance.

According to the news release, Associated Bank is one of “hundreds of community leaders, corporations and foundations” who have pledged to support the project.

The Milwaukee rep says it has completed the concept design, budget, and planning for the project by Milwaukee-based Epstein Uhen Architects, based in Brookfield. Hunzinger Construction and MECON-based construction industry management and advisory firm Chamberlin LLC,

More details about the project will be announced by a Milwaukee representative in the coming months, according to the release. Update rendering is expected later this year.

The Milwaukee representative attracts more than 300,000 people annually to its performances.

“Since we moved into our current home in the 1980s, theater has changed – and so has our community. While it has served us well for four decades, our aging and disabling are influenced by the complex productions we stage, the plays we develop, and the kind of educational impact we create,” Baumann said. With a new theater complex, Milwaukee Rep will ensure that Milwaukee remains a world-class theater in the city center for decades to come. Associated Bank’s support for our campaign is critical to our success, and we are proud that our new campus will be named after a company that gives Milwaukee so much.”

Associated Bank made many improvements for the 28-story office building, formerly known as the Milwaukee Center and located at 111 E Kilbourne Avenue, since its purchase in 2016 for $60.5 million, which included a complete remodel of the first floor and an elevator and escalator replacement is included. Earlier this year, it Associated Bank Center for Professional Development opened On the third floor of the building. Recently it has a. announced plans to add Riverfront Bar, Coffee Shop, and Marketplace of Quick-Service Dining Concepts,

The Associated Bank recently indicated that the Associated Bank Rivercenter building is approximately 80% occupied.

In addition to the Patty & Jay Barker Theater Complex, the office tower is also connected to Associated Bank’s private client services building, St. Kate’s – The Arts Hotel, and The Pabst Theatre, which is located directly opposite the Milwaukee Rep Complex. All of those entities are connected by a central rotunda and are located on a downtown block bounded by Water Street to the east, Kilborne Avenue to the north, the Milwaukee River to the west, and Wells Street to the south.

BizTimes Milwaukee reporter Ashley Smart contributed to this report.

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