By Jeff Sherman Staff Writer Published Jun 01, 2007 at 3:30 PM

I was surprised and happy to see an old friend, John Ferchill, on today.

Today, instead of being partially through development of Pabst City in Milwaukee, he's "betting on a $180 million plan to turn an old hotel (in Detroit) into a deluxe destination with four-star rooms and luxury condominiums."  

Ferchill, one of the men behind the initial Pabst City proposal in Milwaukee's Downtown, is a fun loving, bull-in-china-shop developer who was always a hoot to talk to or hang out with.  He thought big and, like many developers, demanded big.

According to the Wall Street Journal story, it seems that his plan is somewhat similar to that which would have made the old Pabst Brewery into a Bayshore Towne Center-like destination for Milwaukee.  Aldermen, sadly -- as you probably remember -- voted the plan down.  

I wish Ferchill well in Detroit and admit (even though current plans seem to be inching forward for Pabst) that I still would have loved to see Milwaukee embrace his vision so that we'd have a similar development here.  

Oh well, things happen as they should and now it's time, Milwaukee, to finally develop Pabst City!  If Detroit can do it, we can too.

Jeff Sherman Staff Writer

A life-long and passionate community leader and Milwaukeean, Jeff Sherman is a co-founder of OnMilwaukee.

He grew up in Wauwatosa and graduated from Marquette University, as a Warrior. He holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and is the founding president of Young Professionals of Milwaukee (YPM)/Fuel Milwaukee.

Early in his career, Sherman was one of youngest members of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, and currently is involved in numerous civic and community groups - including board positions at The Wisconsin Center District, Wisconsin Club and Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.  He's honored to have been named to The Business Journal's "30 under 30" and Milwaukee Magazine's "35 under 35" lists.  

He owns a condo in Downtown and lives in greater Milwaukee with his wife Stephanie, his son, Jake, and daughter Pierce. He's a political, music, sports and news junkie and thinks, for what it's worth, that all new movies should be released in theaters, on demand, online and on DVD simultaneously.

He also thinks you should read OnMilwaukee each and every day.