Cudahy approves land sale for 36 apartments at former Iceport site
by Sean Ryan - Reporter, Milwaukee Business Journal
March 7, 2018, 3:50 pm

The apartments that developer Dan Carmody opened in Cudahy between 2014 and 2016 are seeing strong demand from both young professionals who work downtown and retired locals.

Carmody and development partner Fred Arbanella built those apartments at 3530 E. Squire Ave. and are renting them out at $1,195 a month. They hope to duplicate that success by developing 36 market-rate apartments in six buildings a few blocks to the west. 

Arbanella/Carmody Builders on Tuesday received approval from Cudahy’s Community Development Authority to buy about 3.4 acres from the city at South Nicholson and East Barnard avenues for the development. 

“There’s a tremendous thirst for new-construction housing in Cudahy,” Carmody said.

The planned project would have six buildings, each with six two-bedroom apartment units. Construction on the first could start later this year, pending final approvals. Buildings will break ground as apartments fill up. Carmody predicts it would take about three years to complete all six.

The apartments are planned for former industrial land south of Layton Avenue that Cudahy acquired and cleared. The Iceport sports facility was planned there years ago. After that fizzled, Cudahy has attracted a mix of developments including a Walgreens store, bank and the Angelic Bakehouse production facility.

“This product is very much sought by the city in terms of bringing that demographic with discretionary income into our downtown,” said Brian Biernat, Cudahy director of economic development.

Like the Squire Avenue buildings, the new ones would stand two stories tall with connected garages and individual entrances for each unit. The Squire Avenue apartments have about 1,300 square feet apiece. 

Carmody said retired tenants renting on Squire Avenue wanted a newer apartment product with amenities, like fireplaces, they had in their former houses. 

Young professional couples aged 28 to 40 also are filling units on Squire Avenue, Carmody said. Many of them work in downtown Milwaukee, and rented a Cudahy apartment for access to Interstate 794, which offers a straight shot to Milwaukee’s jobs and urban amenities.

“Many of them have come from downtown from some of the developments in the 3rd Ward and Walker’s Point,” Carmody said. 

The development site is valued at about $334,700, Biernat said. Instead of paying the city money for the land, Carmody/Arbanella Builders would absorb the higher construction cost of building on the former contaminated land, he said.

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