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The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Citizens express concerns over JD McCormick Properties’ proposed development on State Street

Development would displace businesses on 400 block of State Street, including Sencha Tea Bar, B-Side Records
Shane Fruchterman
B-side records

JD McCormick Properties gave an informational presentation on a proposal to build a five-story development on State Street to the Madison Urban Design Commission Wednesday evening.

The mixed-use development would demolish three two-story buildings on the 4oo block of State Street, displacing several of the businesses currently located there, including B-Side Records, Sencha Tea Bar and Freedom Skate Shop.

Knothe and Bruce Architects architect Kevin Burow presented the development’s plans at the Urban Design Commission’s virtual meeting.


“Our goal for this project is really to bring an elegant building to State Street,” Burow said.

The new building would contain a restaurant on the first floor with an outdoor seating area. It would also have 23 to 26 one-bedroom and studio units.

The building would be located next-door to Peace Park and could feature a space for murals, Burow said.

Proposals to build luxury apartments on State Street cause concerns

“We want to reintroduce the opportunity for artwork and murals on the backside here as we are facing Peace Park,” Burow said.

Madison resident Benjamin Pierce spoke against the proposal, saying displacing the small businesses would affect the culture and historical legacy of State Street.

Pierce said B-Side Records — a records store that has called State Street home for nearly four decades — is an example of a business with “historical and the cultural value” that would be displaced by the demolition. 

“It won’t be hard to find 26 floor units somewhere in Madison, Wisconsin without tearing down these historic businesses which also provide much more culture than anything going to go into this building will provide,” Pierce said.

Two other citizens opposed the proposal, though they did not speak in the meeting. 

New pop-up shops on State Street showcase diverse small businesses

Urban Design Commission Registered Architect Cliff Goodhart said the Plan Commission is responsible for granting the demolition of the buildings. Goodhart said the buildings that would be replaced by JD McCormick Properties’ development are not historic by official designation, because they aren’t Madison landmarks or individually listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Urban Design Commission is reviewing the design of the planned development itself, Goodhart said.

The City of Madison Landmarks Commission said Jan. 31 they are considering some of the buildings on 400 State Street to be part of a potential National Register Historic District, and demolishing them could harm the street’s historic value.

If Madison approves of the project, McCormick plans to begin demolition in September, and finish the development by Aug. 2023, according to the Wisconsin State Journal.

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