Developers Tout Hallie Site for Convention Center
Clover Johnson, LLC, a locally-owned, private development group, is promoting a 100-acre parcel it owns in the Village of Lake Hallie for consideration to develop a multi-use convention and conference center facility. The land, which has approximately .75 miles of frontage road, is located about one-quarter mile south of the Wal-Mart in Lake Hallie, on the west side of the highway 53 freeway.
"This are is missing the availability of a large facility that would bring in a good number of people to the region. We would like to see a 10,000-square-foot conference center and depending on the type of facility that is constructed, we could see this project costing at least $50 million," said Brian Johnson, who owns the land with his partner, Mike Clover.
Linda Adler, executive director of the Chippewa Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, said a committee has discussed the Lake Hallie property and considers it one of number of potential development sites for a convention center.
"The bureau has a Destination Development Committee that came about as a result of an audit. One of the primary findings of a recent feasibility study determined, not surprisingly, that this area needs to develop a multi-use convention center facility. We have considered about ten locations throughout the Chippewa Valley, including land in the River Prairie area in Altoona, the downtown Eau Claire area and in the Town of Wheaton near the Gateway Industrial Park," said Adler, who added that the convention and visitors bureau has no interest in pushing for any public funding to support a convention center project.