Regional Roundup October
Around the New North
HIGHWAY 41 CORRIDOR
Brown, Calumet, Outagamie, Winnebago, Fond du Lac Counties
3D crime technology arrives at Fox Valley Technical College
Fox Valley Technical College is the first training center in Wisconsin to receive 3D laser scanning technology to enhance the gathering of evidence during crime scene investigations and disaster-related scenes.
The Leica Geosystems ScanStation C10-3D Laser Scanner introduces new levels of speed, accuracy and detail for law enforcement officers and public safety professionals, according to Tony Grissim, a public safety and forensic account manager for Leica. “This is the very latest in crime scene mapping; it’s the sort of stuff you see on shows like ‘CSI’,” he says. Grissim demonstrated the new laser during a recent presentation at the college for law enforcement professionals.
FVTC teamed up with the Appleton Police Department and other law enforcement agencies to identify the latest technology available and bring it to the New North. The additional equipment ensures the college will continue to play a greater role in training law enforcement officials throughout the region, says Dan Feucht, an instructor with FVTC’s criminal justice division.
The new scanner cost the college $92,000 – about half the normal price. FVTC was able to get a significant discount because of the relationships it has with law enforcement and training agencies across the United States.
City of Oshkosh rebrands itself as state’s ‘event’ city
The City of Oshkosh has a new brand: “Oshkosh, Wisconsin’s Event City.” The announcement marks the next step in building a unified, competitive brand strategy that will provide greater synergy among the partners marketing Oshkosh, says Oshkosh Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Wendy Hielsberg.
The bureau spent more than two years researching and visioning a new slogan for the city. Hielsberg says when people think of Oshkosh, they often think of events, such as EAA or Country USA, and the sheer number of events. These events are one of the key elements in making Oshkosh a great place to live, work, study and visit.
“We didn’t just create the brand ‘Oshkosh, Wisconsin’s Event City,’ we uncovered what was already there,” says Hielsberg. “We’ve earned the title as ‘Wisconsin’s Event City’ because Oshkosh hosts hundreds of events each year, and we do it well!”
Keller to design, build new FVTC site in Oshkosh
Fox Valley Technical College’s Advance Manufacturing Process Center is getting a new home on Poberenzy Road in Oshkosh. Keller Inc. of Kaukauna is building the 27,216-square-foot facility, which will include welding booths for training and allow for advance welding and fabrication process training.
Businesses will also be able to contract with the center for technical assistance and lean manufacturing simulation. A flexible lab space is also being included to create production cells with robotic welding and other fabrication processes.
Coating Excellence sets eyes on new Appleton facility
Wrightstown-based Coating Excellence International has announced plans to open a facility in Appleton that may create 56 jobs. The Appleton facility, which will open by early next year, will be located in a Wow Logistics warehouse on W. Spencer Street.
The company is receiving financial help through recovery-zone bonds made possible by the federal stimulus package.
The Appleton Common Council is expected to issue up to $20 million in tax-exempt bonds this month to assist the company. The money would be used for building improvements and equipment purchases.
Coating Excellence makes pouches and other flexible packaging materials.
Engineering firm graduates from Green Bay incubator
Mach IV Engineering & Surveying LLC is moving out of the Advance Business Center in Green Bay to a new office on Broadway Street.
Mach IV joined the business incubator in early 2007 with four employees. A year later, the company’s growth required more room and Advance provided them with a separate office suite. Mach IV’s new 4,284-square-foot office is located at 211 N. Broadway St., Suite 114.
The company provides civil design, storm water management, site development, environmental permitting, land divisions, boundary surveys, infrastructure design, utility design, construction management, flood studies, construction staking and feasibility studies.
Door, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Sheboygan Counties
State funds move bike trails ahead in Two Rivers
The City of Two Rivers will use a $488,240 grant from the The Wisconsin Department of Transportation to build the Eastside Bicycle and Pedestrian Trail in Two Rivers, which will provide a safer, alternative transportation route to the local high school.
The funds are part of $37.5 million awarded by Gov. Jim Doyle from the state’s Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality program to help pay for transportation projects in southeastern Wisconsin’s ozone non-attainment and maintenance areas. Two Rivers City Manager Greg Buckley says he expects that designing and planning for the trail can take place in 2011, with construction to follow in 2012.
Orion adds urban wind turbine to Manitowoc site
Orion Energy Systems Inc. is home to a new urban wind turbine that will generate up to 32 megawatt hours a year. Manufactured by Renewegy of Oshkosh, the tower is located at the company’s technology center in Manitowoc. The tower is the first urban wind turbine in Manitowoc County. Urban wind is the process of generating electricity through wind power to be used at an adjacent load center in an urban setting, reducing the inefficiencies of distributing electricity generated in rural areas.
“Urban wind is smart because the turbine is located at the load center, eliminating the need to transmit and distribute the power over long distances, which can result in the loss of up to 15 percent of the energy,” says Orion CEO Neal Verfuerth.
Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara, Marquette, Green Lake Counties
Walker Forge seeking to add $18 million expansion
Walker Forge in Clintonville is planning an $18 million expansion that could add up to 40 jobs over the next three years.
Construction recently began on the 45,000 square foot expansion for the closed-die forging company.
The company received approval from the Clintonville Common Council to receive industrial development revenue bonds, which made it easier for Walker Forge to secure financing for the project.
THE NORTH WOODS
Florence, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto Counties
Grants give tech boost to Menominee college
The College of Menominee Nations in Keshena is receiving more than $3.3 million in federal grants and loans to upgrade and expand its public computer services. The funds are part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program. In all, Wisconsin will collect more than $38 million from the program.
The college plans to break ground next spring on a computer center to better serve students and area residents. Plans call for the addition of about 130 computer workstations to go with the 220 computers already in use by the college.
In addition to the college, the University of Wisconsin System also received nearly $30 million from the same program. Those funds will help the UW-Extension Service (UWEX) offer broadband to up to 182 community institutions, as well as $2.4 million to create seven public computer centers and develop targeted programs to increase broadband usage in five needy communities.
The UWEX funding alone – combined with $12.8 million in matching contributions – is expected to benefit more than 330,000 people and 9,000 businesses statewide, and create nearly 150 jobs.
Wireless broadband coverage expands across northwoods
Residents and businesses in northern Wisconsin will have increased access to broadband Internet coverage thanks to an expansion of service by Cellcom.
Cellcom is now providing wireless broadband Internet service to the Rhinelander, Eagle River, Crandon, Laona, Wabeno, Minocqua, Three Lakes and Tomahawk communities. Previously, the Internet could only be accessed n those areas via a dial-up connection.
“From a telecommunications perspective, the northwoods is underserved, and we are proud to offer high-speed Internet access to these residents,” says Cellcom’s president and CEO Patrick Riordan. “Our future plans include building new towers in this area to better serve our customers.”
Angel network launches in northern Wisconsin
The Vilas County Economic Development Corp. has set up an angel network to support businesses in northern Wisconsin. The Vilas County Angel Network will support entrepreneurs who want to establish high-growth businesses, assist in growing the regional economy and to give investors an opportunity for a “substantial return” on their equity investments, according to VCEDC officials. Over the next several months, VCEDC will spearhead the effort to form the angel network, identifying potential high-net-worth individuals to join the group. Companies outside of Vilas County will be eligible to receive money from the fund.
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