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Northwestern Mutual: Construction Wraps Up Successful 2015

Currently there are approximately 504 workers on the site daily, and that number will continue to increase as the Tower grows.

As 2015 comes to a close, the Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons continues to take major steps towards completion by the end of 2017. Currently there are approximately 504 workers on the site daily, and that number will continue to increase as the Tower grows. Recent activity on the site includes:

  • The installation of temporary insulated enclosures where the company’s south building atrium and Van Buren Street skywalk will connect. Crews are also putting in temporary heaters in the ceiling and walls to keep the pipes from freezing as colder weather approaches.
  • The Commons will soon be entirely enclosed by glass and granite curtain wall. The company expects to enclose the atrium in glass in early 2016.
  • Interior walls are being built in what will be the Mason Street lobby, training rooms and other gathering spaces.
  • A total of 21 floors of The Tower are now framed in steel, with 18-19 of them having concrete slabs on which crews are working. The company expects to top off steel erection in the first half of 2016.
  • Installation of the glass curtain wall has begun on the south side of the Tower. Crews are working eastward before wrapping around the east end of the Tower and continue westward, which will enclose floors 5 through 9. Four floors at a time will be wrapped in glass as the building takes shape. Once that process is underway, interior buildouts can begin, including floors, walls and air handler installation.

The company promised to tap small business enterprises (SBEs) for 25 percent of the project costs and utilize city residents through the Resident Preference Program (RPP) for 40 percent of the hours worked on the project. The most recent report submitted to the city of Milwaukee shows nearly 30 percent of the project contracts have been awarded to SBEs, and more than 46 percent of the construction hours were performed by Milwaukee residents from the RPP program. Dozens of local and Wisconsin-based small business enterprises (SBEs) are currently working or have completed work on the project. The 32-story, 1.1 million-square-foot office tower will preserve 1,100 downtown jobs while adding 1,900 new positions as an anchor of Milwaukee’s lakefront development. The Commons will welcome visitors to the city through the 4.6-acre Northwestern Mutual Gardens, a public café and a visitors’ center.

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Lee Matz

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