New TID approved for Wittenberg’s east side

Mixed-use development to include apartment complex, industrial businesses
Kevin Passon

Wittenberg officials are paving the way for new development on the eastern edge of the village.

Village board members agreed May 7 to create Tax Incremental District (TID) 4, a 57.5-acre site generally comprising of the Wittenberg Business Park.

“Most of this district is what used to be TID 1,” said Traci Matsche, village clerk. “That TID was distressed and closed, so we could create this new TID.”

The village expects to spend $6.95 milliion in the district. This will include $4.15 million for the extension of Liberty Drive, inclusive of the underground utilities. The village may consider funding additional infrastructure projects to include all or a portion of $800,000 for Mohawk Street improvements and about $500,000 for the build out of infrastructure to support housing developments adjacent to the district such as roadways, sewer and water.

Both projects are located within the half-mile surrounding the district boundaries, and half of the Mohawk Street cost is identified as a non-project cost.

Also, the village is including $500,000 for future development incentives in the district.

Finally, the village estimates incurring about $125,000 for the ongoing planning and administration of the district. The village may also incur costs associated with issuing debt, such as interest costs and financing costs, which are estimated at $1.34 million.

The new TID is already off to a good start, with two projects planned. First, S.C. Swiderski purchased property with the intent to build a 56-unit apartment complex near Freedom Way and Robin Road. Second, Potrykus Construction purchased 5 acres in the same area and will use it as a centralized base for its work.

Matsche said the apartment complex is delayed a bit until interest rates move lower. She said that was the agreement with Swiderski, but she still expects the project to move forward.

“They bought the land, and we were told to go ahead and purchase the sewer and water parts,” she said. “We are hopeful it will begin within a year.”

The construction company is owned by Braxton Potrykus, a Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School graduate. The firm originated in 2019, with Wittenberg viewed as a central point for its workers, as well as its commercial and residential projects.

The Potrykus Construction project is expected to add $600,000 value to the district, and the Swiderski apartments would add another $5.04 million. In total, $16.4 million is the value expected to be added to the district once completely built out in its 20-year lifespan.

Also approved was a $96,500 contract with Martenson and Eisle Inc. to cover all engineering, environmental and surveying costs associated with the infrastructure.

“This way, we are ready to build the infrastructure when a new business wants to come in,” Matsche said. “If someone comes in, we can’t just call up an engineer to come in and do all the prep work right away. This way, we’ll be ready.”

The money for the engineering contract will be borrowed from the tax increment generated from TID 3.

The village’s TID 3 was created to allow for an expansion at Nueske’s, which is adjacent to TID 4. There is also a TID 2 in the village that encompasses the area east and west of North Genesee Street south of state Highway 39 (McDonald’s, Subway, Taco John’s, etc.).

In addition to the incremental property value that will be created, the village expects the project will result in positive secondary impacts in the community such as increased employment opportunities, the expected purchase of goods and services from local suppliers in construction of the project, and induced effects of employee households spending locally for goods and services from retailers, restaurants and service companies.

In its last step before final approval, the TID 4 plan will have to be approved by the joint review board, which will meet June 4. If approved, it will be forwarded to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.