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0842, 03 Jul 19

West Bend to Add New Industrial Park


WEST BEND — The city could pay nearly $3.15 million to buy a swath of rural property off its southeastern border for a future industrial park — something city leaders have said West Bend needs but that some neighbors have said they don’t want.

The Common Council on Monday night approved a purchase agreement authorizing the city to pay $20,500 an acre for the targeted roughly 153.5-acre plot near the corner of River Road and County Highway NN.

Closing on the sale could take place in January, and Mayor Kraig Sadownikow noted the final sale price could depend on the land’s precise acreage,

which has yet to be officially platted. The seller, meanwhile, would keep a small portion of property near the River Road-County NN intersection.

City Administrator Jay Shambeau had previously said West Bend would combine the newly acquired land with a neighboring 63-acre parcel the city annexed earlier this year. That would give the city room for a new, roughly 215-acre industrial park — which Shambeau and other city leaders have said West Bend badly needs.

Of course, this is not without controversy. There is a lovely little neighborhood next to this parcel. It is farmland now and contributes to a nice, quiet, rural-like neighborhood. That will change when there are a bunch of light and heavy industrial businesses popping up. That’s a shame, but it’s no reason to retard the city’s growth. This particular site is ideally located with easy access to the interstate, a railroad spur, and across the street from several other businesses that run semi trucks up that road all the time.


0842, 03 July 2019


  1. guinness

    Depending upon which freeway, access is not exactly ideal. For West Bend, that would be I-45. Much better access would be where 33 crosses 45. NN is not a through street to the freeway, so truck traffic would have to commute through West Bend. This would add even more truck traffic to the warehouse distribution center across the street.

    Also, what provides the extremely high quality of life West Bend offers is the quaintness and lack of growth. Expanding the city would have a negative effect. I see no benefit in West Bend getting bigger, since it has so much to offer just the way it is, especially quaintness.

  2. Mark Hoefert

    Technically, Highway 45 is not Interstate. Minor detail, that.  The proposed site is about 3 miles, and 3 round-abouts away from the Pleasant Valley entrance/exit ramps to 45.  (by the Washington County Fairgrounds).  I remember the days of Gehl, Amity, and West Bend Company truck traffic adding to congestion on Highway 33. Along with the railroad crossing & Main Street (also served as State Highway 45) at the time being the only north to south route through West Bend, it was an interesting challenge to get across town. Now people bitch about the length of red wait times at traffic lights.  And amazingly, you can get anywhere in West Bend within 15 minutes, even in heavy traffic.

    Seems like part of the issue is that some residential housing was approved by the Town of Trenton adjoining land that the City of West Bend can zone industrial if they choose.  Usually transitional zoning works to have better compatibility between varying uses. With 150 acres available, hopefully some buffer can be created so these residents don’t have the back of a large industrial building butting up against their back property lines.

    That is a lot of land (and there is more vacant land to the east & south) – makes me wonder if someone is looking for an extremely large parcel.

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