Apartments proposed for Pius lot detailed in zoning amendment request

UPDATE 2: The project is scheduled to go before the Wauwatosa Plan Commission on Nov 7th

UPDATE: The developer has scheduled a neighborhood meeting to answer residents’ questions at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 24, in the cafeteria at St. Pius X.

A proposal to build a 66-unit apartment building on the unused parking lot east of St. Pius X and across the street from Roosevelt Elementary School has generated a considerable amount of discussion in the neighborhood.

The proposal, named The Gridley at East Towne, had been scheduled to go before the Wauwatosa Plan Commission on Oct. 10, but it was moved to the commission’s Nov. 7 agenda instead, allowing more time for the developers to meet with residents.

The Tosa East Towne Neighborhood Association is a nonpartisan group and does not take sides in political debates. The board, however, would like to help get information out about the proposal and any public meetings scheduled on it.

With that in mind, we are sharing these details from the developer’s application for a zoning amendment. (You can review the full application by clicking here.) We expect this will help answer some of our residents’ initial questions about the project, and we will share more as we learn it.

First of all, the developer is Cardinal Capital Management. You may recall that this was the company behind the Pasadena apartments on North Avenue at 85th Street, just east of Sendik’s. The design of The Gridley is similar, as shown in this rendering by Arc-Int Architecture.

sideview

That is what the project would look like if you were standing on the sidewalk in front of Roosevelt looking west. It is three stories and would sit on the east half of the St. Pius X parking lot, at the survey-mapsoutheast corner of 74th and Wright streets. The exterior is to be made from masonry veneer, painted composite siding, fiberglass windows and asphalt shingles.

The developer is under contract to buy about 1 1/2 acres from St. Pius, leaving the church with a parcel just over 3 acres. The building would be just over 90,000 sqft and sit on a 23,000 sqft footprint.

“The parking lot itself is old and there is a retaining wall years past its life expectancy,” Dean Weyer, director of administrative services for St. Pius, told BizTimes in June, before a buyer had been found. “As we look forward, we either invest a substantial amount of money or we turn our asset into a liquid asset and invest wisely.”

The apartments at The Gridley would be rented at market rate, as opposed to units that are rented below market rate to make them affordable and qualify for government incentives. The Gridley’s 66 units would be 34 one-bedroom apartments, 12 one-bedroom-plus-den units, and 20 two-bedroom units, the proposal says.

The development would include 90 parking spots, with 66 of them enclosed under the building. The other 24 would be surface spaces located on the west side of the building, as seen in the rendering below.

siteplan

The proposal indicates that the developer would obtain an easement from St. Pius to use its driveway on West Wright Street, across from 75th Street.

So why is Cardinal going to the Plan Commission? The property is in an R2 District, which means it is zoned for low-density residential use. The zoning limits homes on the property to single-family and two-family dwellings. The city would need to make a zoning amendment to allow higher-density use. At the same time, the proposed building would use up less of the parcel, 36 percent, than zoning requires, 42 percent.

Also the setbacks on the east and south side, 6 feet, would be under what is allowed for the parcel. And the building’s height, 38 feet, would exceed the allowed building height by a few feet.

The developer notes that this is not a typical parcel in the neighborhood.

“The building scale and height will be compatible with the surrounding neighborhood including the institutional uses to the east (Roosevelt Elementary School) and west (St. Pius),” the proposal says.

The proposal also notes that the 90 parking stalls exceed the minimum of 76 spaces required by zoning.

Finally, the developer lists what it sees as “benefit to City” of the project. That full passage is quoted below for residents’ review:

“The proposed development provides greater benefits to the City than would a development carried out in accordance with otherwise applicable zoning ordinance standards. Importantly, the Project would result in increased tax revenues for the City by creating a quality taxable infill development at on an under utilized tax exempt property. The Project would be both compatible with the scale and character of the neighborhood while allowing for greater densities and investment than could be achieved under the current code.

“The Project and zoning amendment are consistent with the goals and recommendations of both the City of Wauwatosa Comprehensive Plan (the “Comprehensive Plan”) and the City of Wauwatosa Comprehensive Housing Study and Needs Analysis (the “Housing Study”). Both the Comprehensive Plan and Housing study note the need for additional housing units given expected population growth and expected declines in household size. Other demographic trends suggest that quality rental multifamily units, in particular, will experience an increase in demand.

“Because the city is landlocked and a relatively limited amount of residential land is available for redevelopment, both the Comprehensive Plans and Housing study encourage the identification of nonresidential sites for residential infill development as well as increased densities that are consistent with the character of the conununity[sic]. Such development will be important in maintaining and growing the City’s population as well as potentially attracting an increasing the proportion of Wauwatosa workers who live in the city.”


TETNA’s seniors invited to apply for $500 scholarship

2016 scholarship Avery Pankratz

Tosa East senior Avery Pankratz (left) receives the 2016 TETNA scholarship from then-president Christina Piel at the annual meeting, held in April at Cranky Al’s.

Know an outstanding high school senior in the Tosa East Towne neighborhood? Encourage him or her to apply for our $500 TETNA Scholarship by Feb. 10.

This scholarship recognizes a student who best exemplifies the TETNA philosophy: “To provide a welcoming and nurturing environment and to maintain the quality of life and sense of community through shared interests and neighborly interaction.”

The scholarship competition is open to neighborhood seniors who attend public or private school, but only students whose families have a current, paid TETNA membership are eligible. The neighborhood is bounded by 60th Street on the east and 76th Street on the west and stretches from North Avenue north to the city limits. For more information, contact the Tosa East Career Center or email Nicole Etter at sweeneyetter@gmail.com.

This scholarship is made possible by the generous donations of our members and area businesses and concession sales at the annual Block Party & Movie Night. Click the “Donate” button at the bottom of this page if you would like to give to the Scholarship Fund. Additional info is available here.

How to apply for scholarship

Seniors at Wauwatosa East High School should have received information about the TETNA scholarship earlier this month through their scholarship packets and can apply through the school’s standard process.

Other high school seniors in the Tosa East Towne neighborhood can apply by producing the following:

  1. Completed Application Form
  2. Two (2) letters of recommendation from teachers, employers, community, church leaders or others who can discuss your character and accomplishments
  3. On separate paper answer the following questions. Please number your answers to correspond to this application.
    1. What extracurricular, community or volunteer activities did you participate in during high school? Please provide a list of these activities on the form provided.
    2. Please give a brief description of your duties/responsibilities of the three activities most important to you. Include the reason of its importance to you.
    3. The TETNA Scholarship is intended to recognize neighborhood high school seniors whose activities demonstrate support for the Association’s philosophy: To provide a welcoming and nurturing environment and to maintain the quality of life and sense of community through shared interests and neighborly interaction. Please describe in an essay how your participation in a community, church and/or other activities embodies the above philosophy.

Please return this completed application to Nicole Etter by Feb. 10, 2017.





East Tosa restaurants shine at TETNA dinner event

Taste of East Tosa at Kneeland-Walker House

East Tosa cuisine is laid out for sampling.

East Tosa cuisine is laid out for sampling.

Dozens of people made it out to TETNA’s annual Taste of East Tosa event on Nov. 17 to sample some of the wonderful cuisine available to us in our neighborhood, another reminder that we’re lucky to live with such great flavors so close by.

This year’s feast featured food from a mouth-watering 13 kitchens: Café BlueTosa Bowl and BunBelAir CantinaHue VietnameseNorth Ave. GrillHarwood Place/Lutheran HomeTall Guy and a Grill,Red DotCranky AlsRocket Baby BakeryJuniper61Ted’s Restaurant and Irie Zulu.

Laura Kirklewski shows off her winning Pumpkin Bars

Laura Kirklewski shows off her winning Pumpkin Bars

Taste of East Tosa was again held at the Wauwatosa Historical Society’s Kneeland-Walker House, which had been beautifully decorated for Christmas.. Attendees were able to take a tour of the historical mansion and learn more about its history.

We capped the night with a fun TETNA tradition, our board members dessert bakeoff. By vote of attendees, this year’s bragging rights went to board newcomer Laura Kirklewski for her Pumkin Bars. We can’t wait for next year to see the great tastes that will be available in our neighborhood.

Thanks to our participating kitchens:

tastelogos2016

Recipe: Laura’s Pumpkin Bars

4 eggs

1 2/3 cups granulated sugar

1 cup oil (vegetable)

1 15oz can pumpkin

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

Beat eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin together.  Add remainder (dry) ingredients.  Mix until thoroughly combined.  Spread batter in a greased 10×13 in baking pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Let cool.

While bars are cooling, make frosting.

1 8oz block of cream cheese, softened

1 stick of butter, softened

2 cups powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat cream cheese and butter together.  Slowly add sugar until well combined.  Add vanilla.  Spread over cooled bars.  Cut and enjoy!


Sample best of local cuisine at Taste of East Tosa on Nov. 17

tastesampler2

Taste of East Tosa returns to the Kneeland-Walker House at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 17. Taste of East Tosa is TETNA’s premiere adults-only event and features samplings from local East Tosa restaurants.

With so many amazing Wauwatosa eating spots, we always have a fantastic variety of foods to try. This is a great opportunity to join with your neighbors, meet the TETNA board and celebrate all of the things we love about our neighborhood.

Here’s the lineup of restaurants confirmed to provide selections from their menus this year:

Desserts and sodas will also be provided. You are welcome to bring your own alcoholic beverage or favorite cocktail, however, the Wauwatosa Historical Society prohibits red wines. Party attire can be festive, not fussy. A tour of the house is also available.

This year our annual TETNA Board dessert competition will return, so come hungry and cast your vote for your favorite sweet treat! Reserve your spot today for $10.

Facebook event

How to RSVP:

  1. First, you need to join/renew your TETNA membership
  2. Then, you can RSVP and pay for Taste of East Tosa completely online (**NOTE: If you get an error message it is either because you have not yet joined/renewed with TETNA, or you need to login to your memberplanet account)

Have you heard?! Teal is the new orange!

Teal Pumpkin Project

Guest Post – Heidi Hemling

Summer has suddenly turned to fall and that means children are getting anxious for the coming Halloween festivities. I see many families decorating their homes with creative haunted houses, spooky lights, and pumpkins of all shapes and sizes. They fill our neighborhood with color and excitement. However, if you take a closer look the next time you are strolling through the neighborhood you will notice that some families are electing to decorate their doorsteps with teal pumpkins.

Why teal, you ask? Because teal is the color for food allergy awareness and trick-or-treat events present significant risks to those children who have been diagnosed with food allergies. The homes decorated with these brightly colored pumpkins indicate participation and support for The Teal Pumpkin Project. This movement was started in 2014 by a Tennessee mom and has now been embraced by Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE).

According to FARE, “1 in 13 children is affected by food allergies and the strongest reactions are usually triggered by milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat or shellfish” Even more startling, FARE estimates that approximately “every three minutes, a food allergy reaction sends someone to the emergency room.”

It’s easy to join the movement and it does not mean you cannot also hand out candy or other food treats if you enjoy doing so. Participating simply means you are offering a non-food treat option that allows for children with life-threatening food allergies to participate in the fun and tradition of trick-or-treating. If you and your families or children would like to become more involved, there are many ways to join the Teal Pumpkin Project:

  • Attend TETNA trick-or-treat registration and grab your very own Teal Pumpkin Project flyer to indicate you have non-food treats available
  • Purchase some inexpensive toys such as glow sticks, bubbles, or pencils to hand out as non-food items
  • Paint a pumpkin a brilliant shade of teal to place in front of your home
  • Visit the Teal Pumpkin Project’s downloads page for access to free materials such as yard signs and stickers to show your support
  • Add your street to the Teal Pumpkin Project Map to let others in the neighborhood know that you are offering non-food treats
  • Share tweets, Instagram posts and Facebook posts with the hashtag #TealPumpkinProject to help spread the word

Let’s come together as a neighborhood to make sure all children are included and can have a happy, healthy, and safe trick-or-treat this year!