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The brown tower is the building that NML will demolish and replace.

In Buzz

Mayor Tom Barrett at Thursday morning's press conference about the new NML skyscraper.

New Downtown office tower details

Today, Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. held a press conference about its new office tower planned for Downtown Milwaukee.

The 840,000-square foot building will be between 30 and 35 stories tall – making it one of Downtown's largest office buildings – and will house hundreds of employees. It will replace Northwestern Mutual's 16-story "brown" building that's south of East Mason and east of North Cass Streets.

"We believe in Milwaukee. It's been our hometown for virtually all of our 155 years," said NML CEO John E. Schlifske. "This will be a signature development that makes a huge statement about the attractiveness of the whole Milwaukee metro area. We are going to be here, and continue to play a vital role in this community for generations to come."

Northwestern Mutual is seeking $48 million in city financing for the project, which will cost $300 million.

The new building could be complete as soon as 2017, pending city approvals. A design for the building has not yet been completed. The company plans to have drawings to share by the middle of next year.

"This is a once in a generation chance to make an investment of this scale in Downtown Milwaukee," said Mayor Tom Barrett. "It means more jobs, a stronger tax base, more community support, and more Northwestern Mutual employees giving back to all areas of the community."


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