Retailer and Bank Plan New Space in Platteville, Iowa

First Wal-Mart, now First National Bank of Platteville and Menards.

Construction on two of the newest residents of the Keystone Development, on Platteville's east side, begins this spring. First National Bank of Platteville is building a new home office in the southwestern-most lot within the development. It could open as early as October.

Menards plans a 162,340-square-foot facility to open later this year or in early 2008.

Both Menards and First National Bank recently signed purchase agreements with Platteville Development Group that owns the property.

"Things came together at the right time," said Tom O'Neil, real estate acquisitions manager for Menards and a Shullsburg native. "We are looking forward to building a store in the Platteville-area market."

In 2002, Menards opened a 170,000-square-foot store in Dubuque. O'Neil said the Platteville store will be similar. Menards intends to keep its merchandise layout consistent from store to store.

Also moving forward, according to Jim Schneller, lead developer behind the commercial/residential development, is a three-building, 30,000- to 40,000-square-foot retail center on five acres west of Menards. Schneller is working with Sara Investment Real Estate, of Middleton.

Keystone also plans a hotel next to Wal-Mart.

"There's nothing definite yet," said Schneller.

Single-family and multi-family housing units, duplexes and townhouses will occupy the residential section. Planning is ongoing. Roads will be built this year in the area. The housing development accounts for about 28 percent of the Keystone area.

Platteville is in a growth phase sparked in part by the expansion of U.S. 151 from two to four lanes. Enrollment is increasing at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, and Southwest Health Center opened a $37 million facility in March 2005.