Food for Growth: Revitalizing the 1200 Block of Milwaukee Avenue

I say this a lot, but I believe it wholeheartedly: We will bring new life to our city center one property owner, one building, one business at a time. And there is some tasty news brewing in the 1200 block of Milwaukee Avenue.

Three food-based business — a bakery and two restaurants — are all making major investments in that block. Let’s head east to west …

  • 1224 Milwaukee Ave. With help from our Downtown Revitalization Grant program, China Chef has brought new life to their facade, opening the front of the restaurant with the installation of new windows, as well as installing a new granite base, restoring the building’s masonry brick, and new paint. The transformation is significant. If you haven’t driven by lately, please do — and then stop to enjoy some tasty sesame chicken.
  • 1232 Milwaukee Ave. Lee and Yang Lue, the new owners of this building, are hard at work on renovations ahead of the opening of their new ice cream parlor. Yep, an ice cream parlor downtown. I stopped by last week, and spent a few minutes with the Lues, as they took a break from laying the new tile floor. Things are starting to take shape, and it’s exciting to see another small local business open here. Stay tuned for more details on an opening.
  • 1234 Milwaukee Ave. Schroeter’s Gluten Free Bakeshop is expanding, with owner Tim Schroeter recently purchasing the former Moxie Fitness/PJ’s Variety Store for use as additional baking space and potentially a small retail operation. Their pizza crust business is booming, and they need more space — and they’ve chosen to expand downtown over other options. That’s the best endorsement we can get.

More details to come on these projects — and others across our downtown.

I love a turn of phrase that Green Bay Packers Coach Mike McCarthy uses, when he references his teams “stacking success.” We are starting to stack success on Milwaukee Avenue, with much more to come.

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