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All Quiet on Pilgrim and Main, But That Could Soon Change

The prominent corner of Pilgrim Road and Main Street is home to one of Falls' most talked about vacancies. Toppers Pizza is on hold, but other businesses are expressing interest.

The highly visible corner of Pilgrim Road and Main Street in Menomonee Falls has also been a highly discussed topic of conversation in the village.

For most of 2013, construction has halted on the landmark building on the corner of Pilgrim Road and Main Street. The exterior is complete, but the interior remains empty. In November, Patch reported that in the building, but that hasn't materialized.

At the time, CBRE Vice President Andrew Stefanich said Toppers would occupy the site in spring 2013. Toppers even picked up HVAC applications with the village, but the location and layout of the pizzeria just wasn’t right.

A village staffer said the proposed layout would have allowed passers-by a view into the kitchen through the large windows facing the intersection. It was suggested they locate in a far end of the building, or another location within the same shopping center. 

A representative from Toppers Pizza World Headquarters said Tuesday that the company is still interested in locating in that shopping center, but the plans have been temprarily put on hold. 

Curiosity from residents was further piqued when Schlotzsky’s Deli owner Dan Gorman closed up shop. The closing left two prominent vacancies in an area long targeted for major improvements. However, it seems there could be light at the end of the tunnel — and plenty more intrigue.

"Yes, we’ve had a significant amount of interest and are very close on a few potential deals there,” Stefanich wrote in an email to Patch Tuesday. “We should be in a position to discuss in a few weeks.  If you reach back out to me mid-May, I should be able to let you know more.”

Community Development Director Matt Carran also said a proposed tenant for the landmark building was in Village Hall picking up applications. Another business was also inquiring about Schlotzky’s, but no official permit requests have been submitted at this point. Carran said they cannot disclose the name of those businesses until an official application is received by the village.

In 2011, the village advanced a , as well as a right of way land purchase on that corner site. The $620,000 right-of-way purchase allows for future expansion of Pilgrim Road. The village also advanced $200,000 to buffer costs resulting from environmental remediation needed on the gas station site.

Patch will continue to bring more updates as they are released regarding that particular corner of the village. 

Nuitari (Grand Master Editor) April 24, 2013 at 03:16 PM
Hopefully not another oriental place either.
Dale Buss April 24, 2013 at 04:04 PM
How about a sit down restaurant? Famous Daves, Chipotle, Longhorn Steak, Red Lobster/Olive Garden combo, all come to mind. And, are not in the immeadiate area.
jerry mislang April 24, 2013 at 04:23 PM
All of those sound great and would make sound business sense. I really like the RL/OG combo.
lu April 24, 2013 at 04:33 PM
But wait, the Village must have that antiquated idea.
Menomonee Falls Girl April 24, 2013 at 04:37 PM
How about a cool non-chain sit down restaurant? Something like Blue's Egg, Comet Cafe or Il Mito?
lu April 24, 2013 at 04:44 PM
Did the resident's and surrounding area resident's like Schlotzky's? If so, maybe they should grab that place and share it with a coffee shop. The profit coming from the coffee area wouldn't cut in on the profit from soda type drink's that usually are ordered when eating pizza.
lu April 24, 2013 at 04:52 PM
Carl, I have never lived in a Village where they construct a building before having a contract and signed lease agreement or buyer. Do small municipalities have that kind of excess money available to speculate.
Di Atribe April 24, 2013 at 04:52 PM
HERESY!!! Pizza is the best food invention in the history of the galaxy--and I'm including that crap they sell from Uranus.
Chris V April 24, 2013 at 05:38 PM
I agree. Was not looking forward to Toppers average pizza. A brew house that serves food would really be nice (not sure if there is enough space for this).
Carl Engelking April 24, 2013 at 06:58 PM
They did get plans, and that's why it was determined it wasn't the right fit for that particular location. The village only sees what a business plans to do when they submit plans, applications, etc. You don't want the kitchen as the thing everyone sees when they drive by.
Carl Engelking April 24, 2013 at 06:59 PM
Olive Garden did just bail on the G'Town development....
Carl Engelking April 24, 2013 at 07:03 PM
Well the cost burden is on the owner of the building. They own the building and have to pay taxes, so a vacant building is really just a concern for the owner who isn't collecting lease fees. It's on the owner now to find a tenant to occupy their investment. The village utilized $620K to buy a right of way for the future expansion of Pilgrim Road. It's to the benefit of the village to have a rusty gas station torn down, and something with a higher property value occupying that space vacant or not.
Tim Delores April 24, 2013 at 07:16 PM
This is ridiculous. The same bloggers who say the Village should stay out of private business, i.e. hotel, are now complaining that the village should have control over private property. The Village did not build this building. The developer did. It is their property, they can do what they want with it. What is clear from these bloggers is they will do what ever they can to tear down the Falls and then blame those who actually get involved and try and make a difference. Either start being transparent and use your name or log off
Steve ® April 24, 2013 at 07:21 PM
In 2011, the village advanced a total of $820,000 to fund developer improvements, as well as a right of way land purchase on that corner site. The $620,000 right-of-way purchase allows for future expansion of Pilgrim Road. The village also advanced $200,000 to buffer costs resulting from environmental remediation needed on the gas station site.
Carl Engelking April 24, 2013 at 07:25 PM
This is also in a taxing district, so the thinking is that the village will gain on its upfront investment from the increased tax revenues. The village would probably be purchasing the right of way regardless as traffic will continue to increase there. The $200,000 is a proper use of tax incremental financing as it was used to remediate the contaminated soil. TIFs are used to invest in blighted areas, and spur development. The TIF also includes the hotel, and closes I believe in 20 years or so.
Carl Engelking April 24, 2013 at 07:26 PM
The risk is if the infrastructure investment in the taxing district exceed the incremental property tax revenue generated. So TIFs do fail, and that's where the risk is involved.
lu April 24, 2013 at 07:28 PM
Thanks for answer.
K. Arthur April 24, 2013 at 08:19 PM
Carl, thanks for responding with facts. A lot of these bloggers take information they assume is correct and spout it as fact. As I understand and this isn't recent, the Toppers was not going into the new space since the village found the window/kitchen issue, however the village is working with them to be in the shopping center between Ottos and Walmart Market. Although these restaurants are all good ideas, they shouldn't be confused for bringing quality jobs to the Falls either. They will flourish as the domino's fall. The business' who have held on and (here's the important part) provided good product and service (Kravers, DeMarinis) will be rewarded when WAC/Froedert, Kohl's have their hundreds of employees in the area. I think the village made a good investment in this corner, and now if someone can get EVS to give up the other corner we can find an attractive use for it. Why can't we put all of this energy into viable solutions instead of blaming and 2nd guessing. I think you mentioned in another article Carl that someone has already shown interest and picked up a permit for the new building and there is interest in Schlotsky'. Thanks for the positive updates and the facts.
Di Atribe April 24, 2013 at 09:03 PM
On second thought, a brewpub would be better. Of course I would never make home after work...
jerry mislang April 24, 2013 at 10:14 PM
I heartily agree. If someone could aaquire and develop that EVS corner, I think that area would really start to take off.
jerry mislang April 24, 2013 at 10:16 PM
Amen Tim, amen. And Carl, you've been a busy man...keep it up!
Nuitari (Grand Master Editor) April 24, 2013 at 11:26 PM
Tim Delores, if you're aiming this at me - Of course I know the village didn't build or own these buildings, but they sure put their two cents in when it comes to facades, signage, landscaping, lighting, parking, etc. Get involved to make a difference? I got involved by voting two asshat trustees out of office. Also, I'm sorry you're one of those people that can't handle anonymous commenting. You and Jerry Mislang can be friends.
Nuitari (Grand Master Editor) April 24, 2013 at 11:27 PM
Yes, and maybe put a Golden Corral there, and see how that flurishes.
K. Arthur April 25, 2013 at 12:59 AM
The corner may need a special use as it is not large enough for normal setbacks. Going to have to be creative on the corner. The land to east may still belong to phone company
Jann April 25, 2013 at 02:09 AM
Can somebody please explain this right of way purchase to expand Pilgrim Rd. to me please. Where the heck can they expand it now that they put this new building practically in the road?
lu April 25, 2013 at 03:33 AM
I asked some time ago and I was told that the Pilgrim Road redo that I read about a few years ago is not going to happen and that a new or redesigned interchange is years away in planning.
lu April 25, 2013 at 03:40 AM
I wish we had just one nice simple sit down restaurant for a business lunch with quality food. No french fries please, that's for the fast food place and crowd.
Nanc April 25, 2013 at 02:18 PM
Jann- I'm curious as well about the Pilgrim road expansion and what the plans are. I live on Main street and Lord knows, there's already enough traffic there and speeds are not policed at all. The speed limit is 25, but no one adheres to that.
Heather April 28, 2013 at 04:02 PM
Rather see an indie coffee shop than an Alterra-- or is that just a dream of John Harbor's gone by?
bruce springsteen April 30, 2013 at 11:48 PM
Nancy, this is clearly a beneficial action of our taxes. I hear they are planning on expanding main street as well inhibiting remy space but allowing more traffic to come from brown deer and milwaukee which I cannot find anything negative pertaining to that either. Plus! Everybody will have less lawn to mow. Yayyyyy!

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