September 28, 2023

🔒 Port Washington will get grant to assist Hollander Chocolate’s HQ renovation

The town of Port Washington is ready to obtain a $187,000 grant from the Wisconsin Financial Improvement Corp. that may assist meals producer Hollander Chocolate with ongoing renovations at its new headquarters, positioned at 1180 S. Spring St.

The funding was awarded by WEDC’s Neighborhood Improvement Funding Grant Program. Hollander Chocolate’s ongoing undertaking, which is redeveloping an deserted automotive dealership, can be serving to enhance the town’s first impression on guests and residents whereas bringing financial worth to the neighborhood, in keeping with WEDC.

“One in every of WEDC’s high priorities helps communities improve their enterprise districts and establishing agency foundations for future development and growth,” mentioned Missy Hughes, secretary and chief government officer of WEDC. “Any such revitalization won’t solely improve Port Washington’s gateway district however function a catalyst for achievement.”

The renovation undertaking is damaged up into three phases. The primary section of the undertaking concerned eradicating all remnants of the outdated automotive dealership, bringing the constructing as much as meals grade requirements, and securing state and federal certifications. The corporate plans to construct new workplace area and a product innovation lab. Workplace personnel would additionally transfer into the brand new constructing on this second section of the undertaking. The ultimate section of growth will see the development of a espresso store, reward store, chocolate museum and interactive innovation lab. The espresso store won’t be run by Hollander Chocolate, however a to-be-announced current firm.

Doug Podzilni, president and co-founder of Hollander Chocolate, mentioned section one of many undertaking is nicely underway. The corporate has its meals grade license for the warehouse portion of the constructing, so product can now be saved there. A loading dock will probably be put in in a couple of month, at which period the warehouse is predicted to be totally operational.

“We’ve bought a protracted technique to go on the within to get to the workplace aspect, which is section two,” mentioned Podzilni. “There’s nonetheless a variety of demolition and building happening. We’ve provide you with a extremely attention-grabbing technique to prolong out (the constructing’s) mezzanine degree.”

When guests stroll into the constructing, there will probably be two ranges of area, with the espresso store and public sights being housed on the higher degree. This may all be constructed throughout the constructing’s current footprint of roughly 24,450 sq. ft, though Podzilni mentioned the corporate has area earmarked for future development.

“Our plan is so as to add one other 25,000 sq. ft of area. It may very well be one hundred pc warehouse, or it may very well be warehouse and just a little workplace or retail area,” he mentioned.

The purpose is to have workers moved into the brand new constructing by the top of the yr and a ribbon chopping for the general public going through sights subsequent spring.

“That’s a fairly aggressive purpose however I feel it’s doable if we multi-task,” mentioned Pozilni. “We will probably be including extra individuals. We’ll in all probability be including one other headcount each three to 6 months for the foreseeable future. That may be my guess,” mentioned Pozilni.

Hollander Chocolate is a start-up firm specializing in dutched chocolate merchandise. It was based in Wisconsin in 2017. The corporate produces café sauces and chocolate powders utilizing Rainforest Alliance Licensed components for eating places, cafés and retail customers.

Hollander Chocolate transferring its headquarters and distribution operations from Fox Level to Port Washington is an element of a bigger plan to enhance the town’s gateway district and encourage future growth tasks within the district.