Lot C developers speak about vision for the $68 million complex

Developer says Lot C will take La Crosse "to the next level"

For the first time since ground broke on Lot C Chief developer Don Weber is speaking out about his vision for the multimillion dollar building.

Don Weber said this project is going to take La Crosse to the next level by turning a more than 200 space parking lot into a multi-use $68 million building. Construction crews are focusing on digging space for an underground parking structure and Weber said everything is on track.

“There is no other community in this state that is moving forward like La Crosse,” Weber said.

Weber said that’s largely thanks to the Lot C development.

At a ceremonial ground breaking La Crosse Mayor Tim Kabat, county officials and other groups came together to celebrate what will soon be an apartment, office and retail complex built on 2.3 acres of land.

“It’s possible that someone can actually come here, live in their apartment, work in the office in the building and recreate at the first floor and on the main street level.” Allen Washatko the lead architecture of the project said. “So really what we are doing here is creating a 21st century downtown that supports 24-hour activity, seven days a week.”

The complex is expected to bring at least 500 jobs to the area and promote economic growth downtown, but construction crews have to build it first. Right now they are working on the 240-space underground parking lot. Weber said even the construction phase will positively impact the local economy.

“Probably a good 80 percent of the jobs, you know the blue collar jobs, the labor, they’re all local, which is a good thing, we’re not bringing most of the labor in from outside the area,” Weber said.

While Weber admits the project could impact business owners and downtown workers.

“There is going to be a couple of years here where some of the streets are closed off,” Weber said.

He said all the work and sacrifice will pay off in a few short years.

“It will bring more people downtown, it will bring property value up, so I think they all see that and they say ‘it’s worth the inconvenience,'” Weber said.

The entire Lot C project is expected to be done by 2018.