Business Resources

South Milwaukee is Open for Business!Population

The City of South Milwaukee has several distinct districts, both shopping and industrial, with recent significant investment in its Downtown District along Milwaukee Avenue, known to the community as "The Avenue". Openings of niche businesses,  Milwaukee Avenue beautification and streetscaping, adaptive reuse of the iconic Bucyrus Club building into a restaurant, event space and museum, are to name just a few.  

South Milwaukee is conveniently located near the growing commercial and industrial corridor along I-94. Come be part of our walkable and growing community that is steeped in heritage, tradition, and culture!

Our Downtown District Market Snapshot illustrates our city's strengths, commitment and momentum of local leaders and assuring new businesses of their choice to be part of the South Milwaukee business community. 

Vertical Ribbon businessesCheck out the 2022 events calendar for ways to get involved and the active South Shore Chamber of Commerce, partnering South Milwaukee, Cudahy and St. Francis.

Business Occupancy

Starting a new business in the City of South Milwaukee requires an Occupancy Permit. Contact the economic development project manager ideally before you sign a lease to learn about available spaces and the steps for obtaining an occupancy certification. 

Refer to this helpful Occupancy Checklist to ensure your start-up will proceed smoothly. South Milwaukee also has numerous successful events for businesses to participate in.  

Application Links


Business Occupancy 
Conditional Use
Sign
Other Permits
Parklet & Pedlet Application and Requirements

Local Business Resources

Contact us about funding assistance that may be available through the Bucyrus Foundation for projects that improve buildings and support ongoing investment in Downtown District, making buildings attractive and safe for new and growing businesses.

Other Resources

There are various resources available to entrepreneurs' through local organizations, providing educational support and financial incentives. Business Resource List (PDF)

KIVA

Kiva lenders have shown their commitment to providing financial assistance to all by making 0% interest loans through a crowdfunding approach, up to $15,000 to entrepreneurs in the U.S.   Kiva.org

Email Renee Lindner at Kiva for more information, or call her at 414-395-4548.

Main Street Bounceback Grant

Through Wisconsin Economic Development Corp, a $10,000 grant to help new or existing businesses move into and revitalize vacant commercial properties within the Downtown District. Program expires December 31, 2022.

Contact Marjorie Yoshida at 414-287-4126 mdc@medconline.com or David Latona 414.269.1445

Wisconsin Women's Business Initiative Corporation (WWBIC)

WWBIC offers business loans, quality business and financial wellness training, and one-on-one coaching.  Loans range from $1,000 up to $100,000 designed to improve buildings and to support ongoing investment, for new and growing businesses. Loans can range up to $250,000 utilizing Small Business Association Community Advantage Guarantee Loan. 

For more information email Michael Hetzel or email  WWBIC Servicing.  

SBA 504 Loans

Finances fixed assets such as commercial real estate or equipment. Low, fixed interest rates for up to 25 years with 10% down payment.  LINK

Small Business Development Center (SBDC) 

The area SBDC is at UW-Milwaukee, offering no-cost, confidential consulting and business education for entrepreneurs. SBDC is supported by U.S. Small Business Association.

For more information email sbdc@uwm.edu or call 414.227.3240

PACE Wisconsin

An innovative program that enables property owners to obtain low-cost, long-term non-recourse financing for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water conservation building improvements.  Call 1-800-522-3014. FAQ flyer.

Wisconsin BAR Association Free Legal Assistance

The Wisconsin Bar Association, in partnership with the Marquette Law School offers a free small business legal consulting service. LINK


  1. Patrick Brever

    Asst City Administrator/Econ Development Director
    Phone: 414-768-8051

  2. Ericka Lang

    Economic Development Project Manager
    Phone: 414-762-2222 x135