Before the Colectivo Coffee folks even opened their first The Ruckus burgers and ice cream stand in January at 4144 N. Oakland Ave. in Shorewood, word had emerged that they were planning a second location in an old Wauwatosa gas station on the corner of 84th and North.
But neighbors of the former Wauwatosa Gas, 8334 W. North Ave, quickly registered their opposition to the project, citing concerns about increased noise and traffic.
Now, the for sale sign is back out in front of the former filling station, and Colectivo co-owner Lincoln Fowler says the project is "dead."
"We went out of contract, (and) it went back to the property owner," Fowler says. "The neighbors were successful in saying they didn’t want that. We wanted to do something, and they said, ‘We don’t want it.’ That’s the way it goes."
The location is near a busy Sendik's location, as well as a Thai-namite restaurant, a few small service-oriented businesses and a short shopping strip a couple blocks west, but the neighborhood is otherwise heavily residential.
The gas station site lacks sufficient space to accommodate off-street parking.
However, Fowler adds he and his co-owners, brother Ward Fowler and Paul Miller, are still eyeing a second The Ruckus stand. The Ruckus in Shorewood opened to high demand and has remained popular.
"What we’re focused on is making sure that Ruckus 1 (in Shorewood) gets up and running properly, and as we get that moving in the summertime, we’ll get back to looking for a new place," he says.
But will the next The Ruckus rise in Wauwatosa?
"Not necessarily," Fowler says. "When we saw that parcel, we were like, ‘Oh my god, we’ve got to do that.’ It would’ve been a fun project. But I can sympathize (with the neighbors)."
In related news, Colectivo is close to opening its first Chicago cafe. The coffee shop will be located in a former Einstein's Bagels location at 2530 N. Clark St. in the Lincoln Park neighborhood.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.