The Business Journal of Milwaukee

Gorman plans $20M conversion of Heritage House in Kenosha into boutique hotel

Sean Ryan, Milwaukee Business Journal, September 5, 2014

Gorman & Co. Inc. is planning a $20.4 million conversion of Kenosha’s historic Heritage House Inn, which is currently vacant, into an 80-room boutique hotel.

Heritage House, built in 1916, closed in the mid-2000s and was damaged by a fire in 2011. Its restoration would include a new pub-style restaurant for 195 people, a 4,000-square-foot banquet hall and ballroom, and swimming pool, according to a report from First-Ring Industrial Redevelopment Enterprise Inc., or FIRE. The building is at 5706 Eighth Ave.

The hotel would have 75 full-time workers and its renovation would create 110 construction jobs.

Gorman & Co., in Oregon, Wis., is assembling a range of financing sources, including EB-5 foreign investment money, historic tax credits, a county loan and New Markets Tax Credits that FIRE would award.

Most of the budget, $10 million, would come from foreign investors through the federal EB-5 program. That program offers investors and their families green cards in exchange for lending money to job-creating U.S. projects. Gorman previously used EB-5 investors to renovate a building in the former Pabst Brewing Co. campus in Milwaukee into the Brew House Inn and Suites.

FIRE, a community development organization run by the city of West Allis, next week will consider awarding $10 million in New Markets Tax Credits to the development. Those credits, once sold to investors, will generate about $2.77 million in equity for the development, said Patrick Schloss, vice president of the organization and West Allis community development manager. FIRE awards the credits to projects in Milwaukee, Racine and Kenosha counties.

HeritageHouse would be the first Kenosha project to receive tax credits from FIRE.

“It meets FIRE’s goal because it is in a low-income census tract,” Schloss said. “It is a blighted property.”

The project budget also includes a $2 million loan from the Kenosha Area Business Alliance, and $3.84 million in historic tax credits.

Developer Gorman realizing impact of housing at Pabst

By Sean Ryan, Milwaukee Business Journal, March 21, 2014

Developer Gary Gorman said he now knows the market for apartments in The Brewery in Milwaukee because there is a waiting list of people trying to get into his existing Blue Ribbon Lofts there.

That’s a good confidence builder as Gorman & Co. Inc. prepares to break ground on 100 additional market-rate apartments in The Brewery campus north of downtown Milwaukee.

But it wasn’t always this way, said Gorman, CEO of the Oregon, Wis.-based company. Development of the 95-unit Blue Ribbon Lofts, which opened in 2009, was a “white-knuckle ride,” he said, because the redevelopment of the large former Pabst Brewing Co. campus was just starting.

“I thought that was a pretty high-risk thing,” he said of the Blue Ribbon Lofts. “I didn’t know how the market would react.”

Blue Ribbon Lofts, which has a mix of market-rate and affordable apartments, is performing well, driving the follow-up Frederick Lofts project that will open in July 2015. Other buildings at The Brewery will be converted into housing for seniors and foreign college students.

“We were the pioneer in terms of residential,” Gorman said. “People will move into challenged or new neighborhoods if you give them an interesting place to live.”

Whitestone Realty Capital, New York City, is planning an up to $46 million restoration of buildings in The Brewery to create 124 senior housing units. Construction is expected to begin in April for a July 2015 opening.

Blue Ribbon Management LLC plans to renovate a different building in The Brewery into 360 housing units for foreign students attending Milwaukee colleges. That project also includes a 40-room extended-stay hotel.

Frederick Lofts at Pabst

By , Reporter- Milwaukee Business Journal, March 15, 2014

Work will start this month on Gorman & Co.’s market-rate apartment project in The Brewery in Milwaukee after the developer secured financing and bought the project site.

The four-story building will open to tenants in July 2015, with rents starting at $1,350 for a one-bedroom and $1,750 for a two-bedroom unit. The three live/work units will start at $1,450 a month.

The Frederick Lofts will be built at North Ninth Street and West Juneau Avenue in the former Pabst Brewing Co. campus just outside of downtown Milwaukee.

BMO Harris Bank has closed on $10.3 million in financing for the project, said Gary Gorman, chief executive officer of Gorman & Co., Oregon, Wis. Gorman also has $6 million through a Chinese investor. Chinese investors, through the federal EB-5 immigration program, have financed several projects in The Brewery in exchange for green cards.

This investor, however, simply is putting money into the project without using the federal program, Gorman said. The investor, who Gorman met through his connections in Shanghai, selected the project after touring The Brewery and the Brewhouse Inn & Suites hotel that Gorman developed.

“He made the decision on the spot,” Gorman said. “Just made a $6 million decision on the spot and shook our hands and said, ‘That’s it.’ We had to talk him into hiring a lawyer for it. He said, ‘But I just shook hands with Gorman.’”

Gorman last week also closed the $1.4 million land purchase for the site with The Brewery’s owners. which is run by executives at Zilber Property Group.

Gorman’s project is among a slew that developers are getting out of the ground this spring in that area.

“Part of it is interest rates are very favorable right now,” Gorman said. “That really makes the numbers work, and the demand is good.”

Four-story apartment project planned near downtown Waukesha

By:  Sean Ryan, Milwaukee Business Journal, December 4, 2013

Gorman & Company, Inc. is proposing a four-story building with 56 apartments, most of which would be affordable, on East Main Street in Waukesha where city officials are encouraging redevelopment.

The project is planned for a vacant, 2.3-acre site north of Main Street and west of the railroad tracks in a former railroad right-of-way. The project would have 14 market-rate units, 14 units with services to support veterans, and affordable apartments, said Ted Matkom, Wisconsin market president for Gorman, of Oregon, Wis.

“We have always been looking for the perfect site in downtown Waukesha and this was available through a broker,” Matkom said. “Several people referred us to this site because it was challenging.”

Gorman in early 2014 will apply for about $850,000 in affordable housing tax credits from the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority for the roughly $10 million project, Matkom said. If awarded the credits, the project could start construction in about a year for a 2015 opening, he said.

The area, east of Waukesha’s downtown, has older houses and vacant properties that city officials would like to see redeveloped, said Jeff Fortin, Waukesha community development specialist.

Waukesha’s Plan Commission will review Gorman’s project plan Dec. 11.

Building a community from both sides: Ted Matkom

See below for the link to the video.

Ted Matkom’s job bounces between both ends of Milwaukee’s social spectrum, from opening a high-end downtown hotel at the former Pabst Brewing Co. site to encouraging residents in central city neighborhoods to unite behind common goals.

The Wisconsin market president for developer Gorman & Co. Inc., Oregon, Wis., is involved in the seemingly distant endeavors with equal enthusiasm. He oversaw development of the 90-room Brewhouse Inn & Suites, which opened in April at The Brewery in Milwaukee, and he is leading the rehab of 200 foreclosed houses in Milwaukee’s central city. About 90 percent of the houses are rented to women and their families, he said.

Matkom said his biggest unmet goal is to unite residents in the areas where Gorman is renovating homes to form tight-knit neighborhoods with shared goals. Matkom said he is not trying to lead, but rather organizing meetings, setting up the coffee and doughnuts, and stepping back.

“One of the biggest surprises I encountered was the true difficulty of community building and community organization,” Matkom said. “Every person has a different agenda and a different goal of how they want their community to look. Everyone wants stability, no crime and rising property values. But there are a million different ways to get there if you ask a million different people. What I have yet to do, and my goal is to do, is to create a community from our scattered site developments.”

A conversation on Matkom’s endeavors churns up a seemingly endless list. He has 10 years of experience as an attorney, where his work included supporting Columbia St. Mary’s expansion of its East North Avenue campus in Milwaukee. After joining Gorman & Co. as general counsel, he traveled to work on projects in Arizona, Mississippi and Illinois.

In Wisconsin, he served eight years on the board of Menomonee Valley Partners Inc., the business group behind the rehabilitation of the once-blighted area into a booming industrial district. From there, he transitioned to serve as president of the 30th Street Industrial Corridor Corp. in northwest Milwaukee.

“I thought the 30th Street corridor was kind of the next frontier of redevelopment,” Matkom said. “It turned out there was a perfect synergy between trying to foster economic development in the 30th Street corridor and trying to foster stabilization in foreclosed, ravaged neighborhoods surrounding the corridor.”

Matkom and Gorman’s housing rehab is concentrated in neighborhoods around the 87-acre former Tower Automotive site, which the city has bought and rebranded as the Century City business park. Matkom is halfway through the fifth phase of the housing effort, each with about 40 housing units.

But there’s a job training component to those projects. After all, Matkom’s hat rack includes a position on the Milwaukee Area Workforce Investment Board Inc.

For the housing rehab, Gorman hired Northcott Neighborhood House as a subcontractor. The Milwaukee nonprofit’s Youth Build program trains 18- to 24-year-olds in construction. Gorman created 28 jobs for Northcott workers through each of the housing rehab’s five phases.

“We were hoping those real-life experiences would help bolster their resumes to go out and find a job in, quote-unquote, the real world,” Matkom said. “What happened, which was a great story, however a little inconvenient for us, was it actually was successful. People were being hired away.”

Currently, Matkom is working with the Northwest Side Community Development Corp. to build a tech school and 43 apartments north of the Century City site. That project, like much of Gorman’s housing work, will compete for state affordable housing tax credits.

Matkom and the Northwest Side CDC previously collaborated on the award-winning Villard Square, a combination library and affordable apartment project at North 34th Street and West Villard Avenue. Howard Snyder, executive director of the CDC, said Matkom and Gorman, though in a profit-making business, take on projects more commonly associated with the nonprofit world.

“He knows there’s a profitable thing to do and a right thing to do, and you don’t find many people with that kind of skill and talent who want to work in these kinds of neighborhoods,” Snyder said. “We’re even looking at the next two projects down the road.”

Asked how his professional background — which started with legal and political science degrees — branched into community development, Matkom dusted off another role he played in the past. He said the two really gelled for him when he served on the Whitefish Bay village board for four years, starting in 2000.

“A lot of land-use issues went through, which really showed to me the importance of good development that was linked with community goals and the participation of the community citizens,” Matkom said. “That whole thing really has resonated with me throughout my career since then and it has really been the core of what I want to accomplish as a developer.”

Personal File

  • Title: Wisconsin market president
  • Company: Gorman & Co. Inc.
  • Age: 46
  • Family: Married 21 years to Beth, with four daughters age 3 to 20
  • Education: University of Wisconsin-Madison undergrad and Marquette University School of Law degree
  • Resides: Whitefish Bay

Judgment Calls

  • Best Decision: “Marrying my wife, Beth”
  • Toughest Decision: “Leaving the law firm to be a real estate developer”
  • Like best about your job: “The diversity of people I encounter every day.”
  • Most important lesson learned: “Always be true to your word.”


  • Pastimes: Golf, soccer and music
  • Band to see at Summerfest: Violent Femmes
  • Last book read: “Montana 1948: A Novel” by Larry Watson
  • Favorite vacation spot: Boulder Junction

Gorman proposes 100 high-end apartments at former Pabst site

Gorman & Co. Inc. is seeking Milwaukee approval for a four-story building with 100 higher-end apartments on the eastern end of the former Pabst Brewing Co. site.

The building is proposed for vacant land northeast of North Ninth Street and West Juneau Avenue, and could start construction in spring 2014, said Gary Gorman, chief executive officer of Gorman & Co., Oregon, Wis. The development is dubbed Frederick Lofts, after Pabst Brewing Co. founder Frederick Pabst. The building will have underground parking, a rooftop deck, health club and other amenities, Gorman said.

Gorman said his company has tested the area market through its Blue Ribbon Lofts apartments in The Brewery development. Unlike Gorman’s other Milwaukee projects that are rent-controlled for low-income residents, Frederick Lofts would be on the higher end of the market. Gorman said monthly rents would be in the “high $900s” for efficiencies, $1,275 for one-bedroom units and $1,750 for two-bedroom apartments.

Gorman said his company has had to turn away potential tenants in its rent-controlled Milwaukee apartments because their income levels were too high. Those renters could be referred to Frederick Lofts, he said.

Gorman would buy the land from Brewery Project LLC, a company under the estate of deceased developer Joseph Zilber that has led The Brewery development.

Milwaukee’s Plan Commission will review the project on Monday.

Sean Ryan reports on real estate, construction and public transit in southeast Wisconsin

Brewhouse Inn preps for opening in two weeks

Apr 10, 2013, 9:10am CDT

Brewhouse Inn preps for opening in two weeks:

Scott Paulus

The 90-room Brewhouse Inn & Suites is set to open later this month in the former Pabst Brewery in downtown Milwaukee.

Sean RyanReporter- The Business JournalEmail | Twitter | Google+
The 90-room Brewhouse Inn & Suites is set to open later this month in the former Pabst Brewery in downtown Milwaukee, making it the second new hotel to recently open in a historic downtown building.

The hotel, developed by Gorman & Co. Inc., is at 1215 N. 10th St in The Brewery area. Like other former Pabst buildings, the hotel was once a dark and shuttered former brewery building that will return to life and bring new visitors to the area.

It joins a rush of new hotels being developed in the downtown area, but is the only extended-stay hotel in the bunch. Developers renovated the Loyalty Building on North Broadway in downtown Milwaukee to a Hilton Garden Inn in 2012.

The hotel managers are gathering material to display in the hotel, including a photo from comedian Will Ferrell standing on the historic Pabst sign that spans West Juneau Avenue. They’ve also painted a small bus in the Pabst colors to shuttle people from the hotel to sporting events, such as Milwaukee Brewers games.

Restaurateurs Mark and Dan Zierath will open a Blue Ribbon Pub in the building’s first floor.

Sean Ryan reports on real estate, construction and public transit in southeast Wisconsin