Bluemound Rd. construction paves way for new business

BROOKFIELD -- After five months of construction, work on a busy corridor through Waukesha County is nearly complete. On Wednesday, Gov. Scott Walker and other leaders held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially mark the reopening of all lanes on Bluemound road in Brookfield.

“The transportation needs in this state are economic development needs.  We know the two go hand-in-hand,” Gov. Walker said.

Starting last April, DOT crews added turn lanes, widened the road and repaved the 3.25 mile stretch between Moorland and Barker Roads. Officials say 50,000 commuters travel the stretch every day.

“The existing pavement was in very poor condition and it was last resurfaced back in 1991, so it was very rough,” DOT Project Manager Steve Schindler said.

The $14.1 million project has not only made the area more accessible for commuters, but it has made the area more attractive to business.

“Bluemound Road is open and that means it's open for business in this area,” Gov. Walker said.

Since work began, nearly 20 new businesses have moved to the Bluemound corridor, adding hundreds of new jobs.  Connecture's 230 employees are now headquartered in the Brookfield Lakes Corporate Center.  Insurance group, Willis of Wisconsin, is moving its main office to Executive Drive.

“That's how we really expand.  It’s by growing by 20, 30 or 100 at a time, and that's really wonderful for our city,” Brookfield Mayor Steve Ponto said.

Officials said it shows thriving economic development, but more importantly, it puts Brookfield on the map as the premier business location outside of downtown Milwaukee.

The Bluemound Road project is about 90 percent complete.  DOT crews will have to work on final touches, which include permanent traffic signals and pavement