One of the coolest brownfield redevelopment projects I've been honored to work on over my 30-year career (and there have been a lot of them) is Beloit College's Powerhouse project. Beloit College is one of the premiere private colleges in the country and its President, Scott Bierman, had the vision of developing a multi-use student union and recreation center in a shuttered coal-fired power plant that neighbored the campus on the shores of the Rock River flowing through Beloit. Scott tasked former DOA Secretary (under Gov. Doyle) and Beloit native Dan Schooff with the job of making this vision a reality At that time, Dan was a consultant to the College. Over the ensuing years, Dan and I (and our team at Michael Best) worked closely to negotiate the transaction with the former property owner (a regulated utility), mitigate risk, obtain necessary regulatory approvals and utilize creative and sound financial structures. The team at TRC were important technical partners to the project throughout.
A true labor of love, President Bierman and Secretary Schoof -- Dan is now the College's Chief of Staff and Secretary -- brought the vision to life while preserving key elements of the former plant including the iconic smokestack that has been a staple of the Beloit skyline. A picture is worth 1,000 words, so please see the linked article in archdaily.com with special recognition to the College's architects, Studio Gang of Chicago.
By the way, the quote above is Dan's for attribution and was jokingly used throughout the process. What an awesome project!
"The design retains architectural features and industrial equipment from the original structures while incorporating new sustainable practices and lively gathering spaces that encourage students to mix with each other and the larger Beloit community."