Three incentive agreements for proposed industrial projects were passed unanimously by the city council Monday night, paving the way for more than 460,000 square feet of new industrial space.

The council largely applauded the projects, which will add $16.15 million in new property value, according to city projections.

Milwaukee developer Zilber Property Group plans to build on speculation a pair of 178,000-square-foot industrial buildings on 24 acres at Venture Drive and Beloit Avenue.

The council approved a tax-increment-finance agreement for Zilber that includes:

  • Sale of land valued at $845,569 for $1.
  • A TIF incentive of $1.5 million, or about $150,359 per year for 10 years.

The agreement uses a pay-as-you-go method, meaning the developers will receive incentives gradually over 10 years. There are no upfront costs to the city, and the city will not need to take out new debt for the deal.

Incentives paid over time come from increased property tax value created by the project, funds the city does not currently depend on to operate.

Zilber’s project is expected to generate about $12.8 million in increased property value, said Gale Price, economic development director.

The agreement dictates the project be complete by the end of the year, which Price said is realistic. Another Janesville project completed by Zilber in 2020 was completed on a shorter time frame.

Chad Navis from Zilber said the company intends to bring in tenants who plan to stay in the facility long term.

Beloit paper tube manufacturer Western Container plans to build a 43,000-square-foot manufacturing facility at 1301 W. Venture Drive. The facility is part of a corporate expansion for Western Container.

An incentive agreement with Western Container allows for land valued at $164,654 be sold to the developer for $1. That amount would be paid off in five years as the project will generate $32,930 in new tax increment annually, Price said.

The agreement dictates the project be completed by the end of the year, but the developer believes it will be complete by the end of October, Price said.

The project will facilitate new production for the company, which manufactures tubes for paper products, Price said.

Matt Teeman from Western Container said the paper industry is the strongest it has been in 25 years thanks to changes in consumer buying patterns caused by the pandemic.

Western Container is seeing about 25% year-over-year growth, Teeman said.

The Janesville plant would initially employ about 10 people and is slated to grow, Price and Teeman said.

Council member Susan Johnson said she would have preferred to see the company bring more good-paying jobs to the city.

Council member Paul Williams said he was glad to see any amount of jobs created, and he welcomed the company to Janesville. His praise was echoed by members Paul Benson, Tom Wolfe and Jim Farrell.

Badger Property Investments plans to develop a 60,000-square-foot industrial building on speculation at 4245 Capital Circle in the city’s east-side industrial park.

The TIF agreement provides an up-front, tax-increment financing incentive of $170,000 and land valued at $116,225 will be sold to the developer for $1.

The project will generate about $51,098 in new tax increment annually. The land deal and incentive will be paid off within six years—when the tax-increment-district is planned to close, Price said.

The Badger Property project was approved unanimously with no discussion by the council. Wolfe said the development company has a long history in the city and has proven to be an “excellent” operator.


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