10001 S. Howell Ave. in Oak Creek

MILWAUKEE—Although the industrial real estate market in Southeast Wisconsin has attracted a lot of notice, both for its strong record of new construction and its close connections to the major market of Chicago, the broader Milwaukee market just to the north has also put up some solid numbers. The metro area experienced, for example, 813,406-square-feet of absorption in the second quarter, according to second quarter reports from Xceligent.

And it was Milwaukee County, with 380,000-square-feet of absorption, which led the way, even edging out Kenosha County, which sits on the Illinois border and had 378,000-square-feet of absorption.

“Over the past year the market has experienced nearly 4.5-million-square-feet of absorption,” the Xceligent report notes. “As a result of the positive absorption, the vacancy rate has dropped from 6.71% to 6.05% over the past year.”

Kenosha County, however, has had the best year of any in the region. Since the second quarter of last year it saw 1.36-million-square-feet of absorption, followed by Waukesha County which had 1.18-million-square-feet.

The largest leasing deal during the second quarter was by Joy Global, which took 305,065-square-feet of distribution space at 10001 S. Howell Ave. in Milwaukee County’s Oak Creek. The landlord was represented by Steve Anderson of the Anderson Commercial Group.

The largest sale of the period was Junco’s purchase of a 202,592-square-foot manufacturing building at 2800 W. Custer Ave. in Milwaukee from Rock Tenn Converting Co. for $1.575 million. The seller was represented by Jim Larkin and Mark Schnoll of Colliers International Wisconsin and the buyer was represented by Samuel Dickman and Samuel Dickman Jr. of the Dickman Company, Inc.

The next year should put up good numbers as well, according to Xceligent statistics. Developers currently have about 6.3-million-square-feet of industrial space under construction, and 5.6 million of that is new construction. Of that, 4.5-million-square-feet is build-to-suit or owner-occupied, with the remaining 1.1 million being speculative construction.