The final draft of hired by the City of Muskego was given its blessing by the Community Development Authority (CDA) Thursday night. It will receive further scrutiny from aldermen and could be approved by April 24, when the council next meets.
Marketing firm Vierbicher Planners provided a critical overview of the city's commerce centers, and also recommended a timeline of tasks to help the city connect with outside businesses to bring them into the city.
City planner Jeff Muenkel told the CDA that much of the early work would come from current staff, and as budget time got closer, they could look at what additional costs might be required to continue to execute the plan.
What work is highest priority, and the timeframe suggested by Vierbicher, included the following:
High Priority Objectives
- Starting local inventors / entrepreneurs club to bolster start-up business assistance and entrepreneurial support
- Expand marketing of Muskego and Waukesha County revolving loan funds, explore coordinated application process.
- Educate local potential entrepreneurs about available venture capital funds
- Identify locations in City to develop leasable office space to support office and service business uses to Muskego in industry sectors that more closely match Muskego’s residential population base.
- Begin a business referral program for residents or present City businesses that are responsible for referring a business to locate in the city
- Examine permit and ordinance fees to determine if they may be deterring business, and make changes as appropriate.
- In the business park, market the dwindling industrial space with outdoor storage capacity, and re-examine design guidelines and ease restrictions on interior properties that are not visible or offensive to other
Of particular note was another high priority item for Janesville Road:
"Establish public waterfront access park to anchor community shopping area, draw residents to Janesville Road, and support corridor businesses. Encourage higher density development near park space to leverage City investment and create identity node for the corridor. Explore assistance in site assembly and marketing redevelopment opportunities for parcels surrounding new park. Ensure that view corridor to lake exists for vehicular and bike/pedestrian traffic on Janesville Road."
As , the next possible spot might be the former Parkland Mall site. However, development will not occur there until ais resolved. In addition, lake access would exist about a quarter mile from Janesville Road, and not likely provide the 'view corridor' that the study recommended.
In addition, the study advised the city to continue an initiative to develop a hotel that supports business along the Moorland Road corridor over the next 24 months.
travel and business functions.
Other suggestions are well underway in the city, including providing more connections through bike and pedestrian trails or routes, and providing better connectivity in future development to help encourage Muskego shoppers to do so locally. The study called Muskego's current layout "very disjointed, and standard household trips are lengthened due to missing connections. In general, this forces people into their cars and once there, they can easily shop outside of the community."
The development of a new website, which was recently approved at council, was also recommended in the near term.
View the entire report, which is contained in the CDA meeting agenda, here. The recommendations are distilled on pages 85-100 of the report.