Thursday, September 27, 2018

We Energies to sell Solvay Coke site to Komatsu

In a joint arrangement among We Energies, the City of Milwaukee and Komatsu Mining Corp., 43 acres of the Milwaukee Solvay Coke site, owned by We Energies since 2017, is to be sold to Komatsu. The signing of a term sheet for the sale was announced at an on-site event co-hosted by the three parties Sept. 27, that was attended by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, as well as members of the Board of Harbor Commissioners, Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce and Milwaukee 7 (M7) regional development organization.

From left: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Kamatsu Mining CEO and President Jeffrey Dawes,
WEC Energy Group Chairman and CEO Gale Klappa, Milwaukee Development Corp. Treasurer Frank Krejci,
and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.
At the event, Jeffrey Dawes, president and CEO of Komatsu Mining, announced the mining company’s plans to develop the property with a nearly $300 million investment in a new corporate headquarters and manufacturing campus. With a 134-year history in the city, Dawes described the importance of the project to the mining company’s long-term growth strategy.

WEC Energy Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gale Klappa, speaking on behalf of We Energies and the M7, added “Komatsu – a global industry leader – is making a major investment that will have a defining impact on Milwaukee’s future. And I’m particularly pleased that Komatsu has chosen to invest in the redevelopment of this area, adding another strong presence to the Harbor District.

“Today’s announcement also highlights how attractive our region is to global companies and the remarkable asset we have in our workforce,” Klappa continued. “Today is a shining example of what can be achieved when the public and private sectors work together for the common good. Go, Komatsu. And On Wisconsin!”
WEC Energy Group Chairman and CEO Gale Klappa
In addition to the new Komatsu facility, the sale supports the city’s development of approximately 2 acres of the site for a planned riverwalk nearby and provides for public access to the waterfront.

The site, which had been used for a variety of industrial processes, such as coke and manufactured gas production, as well as coal and coke storage since the late 1880s, was put up for sale by its previous owner in 2016. As one of several past tenants identified as responsible for remediation of the site, We Energies purchased the property and worked jointly with the Environmental Protection Agency and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to remove and recycle tens of thousands of tons of debris from the property, including rubber, asphalt, steel and crushed concrete.

We Energies will continue to remediate the site through 2019. Completion of the sale is anticipated in 2020.