Stated plans for properties owned by SIST, Midwest Properties in Shawano

The Shawano Leader/October 11, 2004
By Tim Ryan

Kal Gronvall, a representative of Dr. R.C. Samanta Roy and a member of the Board of Directors of the Samanta Roy Institute for Science and Technology, outlined the following plans for some of Samanta Roy's properties at a July 7 meeting of the Shawano Common Council:

A news center is planned for the vacant building at 303 E. Green Bay St., which Gronvall told the council, was hoped to be opened within two to three months. The news center will feature international newspapers, as well as magazines and books, and high-end gifts. Coffee, sandwiches, ice cream, fudge, popcorn and other refreshments will be served. There will also be a reading area where people will be able to sit down and read newspapers and magazines. There are also plans for an electronic scrolling "message center" across the front of the building displaying world news.

The vacant property at 214 S. Main St. is slated for a fabric store. Gronvall said that would probably be the next business to open after the news center. "We're going to have very high-end fabrics in there, appliances, upholstery, carpet. There's going to be some really unique products," Gronvall told the council.

The property at 153 S. Main St. is going to be high-end gift and housewares," according to Gronvall. "It's going to be two stories, all retail," he said.

Gronvall told the council that the property at 143 S. Main St. will be an athletic club featuring "state-of-the-art weights, exercise machines and everything else." Gronvall said that accommodating it will mean putting another story on the building.

Gronvall also said that an ice cream store was being planned for the property across from the Mobil Station at 1206 E. Green Bay St. "That may happen sooner than the others, we don't know yet," he said.

Gronvall also told the council that the group plans to rent out the property at 201 N. Main St.

Gronvall also answered the council's questions about the timeline for the properties.

"The fabric store is basically ready to go," Gronvall said. "It needs windows. It's basically ready to move into. It needs new paint, stuff like that, and there are some problems in back with the roof but that's minor." He told the council that "it should be fairly soon" that the fabric store would be ready to open. The property at 153 S. Main St., Gronvall said, was in need of much more work.

"The old Qualheim building was kind of a disaster inside so we gutted the whole thing. Now we are ready to completely renovate it from top to bottom," he told the council. "We also want to preserve its historic look. We're toying with a lot of different things. We've had some structural engineers over there looking at it and they're giving us a proposal."

Except for the news center at 303 E. Green Bay St., the plans detailed at the July 7 meeting are the same as those outlined by SIST in written responses to questions at an April 9, 2003 Common Council meeting.

The questions had been submitted to SIST by the city. At that time, when asked for a timeline for opening the businesses, the written response was: "Local contractors are waiting for approval from the state. Once this is obtained, construction will begin."

Site plans for the property at 303 E. Green Bay St., designed by the Heyrman Construction Co. of Green Bay, were submitted to the Wisconsin Department of Commerce in April of 2003. A building permit was issued and then renewed in April of this year.

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