The Innovative Cities Lecture Series
The City of West Allis has successfully started to reshape itself by leveraging Comprehensive Planning and Economic Development tools to spur several successful and transformative projects bringing brand/place to West Allis. The City’s strategic vision aims to reposition itself as a progressive leader in Southeastern Wisconsin.
Patrick Schloss is the Economic Development Executive Director for the City of West Allis as well as the Vice President of the First Ring of Industrial Redevelopment Enterprise, Inc. (F.I.R.E). With over 24 years of experience in economic development, Patrick is actively engaged in redevelopment projects for an urban City that involves the deployment of multiple federal, state, and local funding sources and programs. Patrick is passionate about creatively attracting private investment and fostering new small business growth. Schloss is responsible for negotiating development agreements to forming partnerships that guide, assist, and open small businesses. Through the years in economic development, Schloss’ work has covered a spectrum of successful projects that include New Market Tax Credits, Section 42 tax credit deals, creating a neighborhood association program, guiding the revitalization of neighborhood parks, developing a road map for small businesses to navigate the City’s approval process, implementing KIVA, and much more.
As Vice President of a successful Community Development Entity called First-Ring Industrial Redevelopment Enterprise, Inc. (F.I.R.E.), efforts have included allocating over $353 million in New Market Tax Credits to support regional economic growth in Milwaukee, Racine, and Kenosha Counties. To date, FIRE tax credits investments have created 3,500 permanent jobs, 2,047 construction jobs, and 2,484,309 sq. ft. of development within distressed neighborhoods.
Additionally, Schloss currently services on the Vice Chair of the Board of Wisconsin Business Development, Inc. and is a Past President of WEDA. Patrick loves youth sports offered throughout the community, great small town feel found in neighborhoods and commercial districts, and enjoys the Farmers Market for fresh produce to include in his home cooked meals.
Steve Schaer is the Manager of City Planning and Zoning for the City of West Allis and has been with the city since 2002. His interests and focuses are in land use and neighborhood planning, redevelopment, site/landscaping and architectural review, urban design, tax incremental financing, geographic information systems, and bike and pedestrian planning. Steve holds a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in Urban Planning.
Steve Schaer is the Manager of Planning and Zoning for the City of West Allis, and in his role, he is also involved with the Community Development Block Grant program and Neighborhood Associations & Housing Office. He graduated with his Master in Urban Planning in 1996 from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and has since had 25+ years of experience in City Planning and redevelopment. The West Allis City Planning team recently completed: (a) new zoning ordinance, (b) site, landscaping and architectural guidelines, (c) a complete street policy, and (d) collaborated and helped implement the city’s new online permitting platform to improve workflows, permitting and overall satisfaction. Earlier this spring, the Planning team embarked on a local citizen engagement tour toward development of the City’s 2045 Comprehensive Plan. The City has successfully reshaped itself by leveraging Comprehensive Planning and Economic Development tools to spur several successful and transformative projects bringing higher visibility and a new brand to West Allis. Redevelopment efforts focus not only upon building something new, but strengthening existing neighborhoods, becoming more socially connected, bicycle and business friendly. The City’s overall organizational strategic vision aims to reposition itself as a progressive city leader in Southeastern Wisconsin.
Steve enjoys bicycling, skiing/snowboarding, travelling, drinking crafty beer (in a garden) with friends and family.
AICP-CM credits will be awarded.
All lectures are free and open to planners, students, staff, faculty, and friends of the University. Please contact Blythe Waldbillig, Department of Urban Planning Project Assistant at firstname.lastname@example.org