WAUSAU – A key part of downtown Wausau begins a new chapter with the official closing of the Wausau Center mall during the week ending April 10.

The closing clears the way for the new mall owner — Wausau Opportunity Zone, Inc., or WOZ — to begin transformation of the property into an urban hub complete with housing, boutique retail, hospitality and gathering spaces, WOZ said this week in a news release.

The first phase of the demolition process is expected to begin in May. HOM
Furniture and the two parking ramps adjacent to the mall will remain open. HOM Furniture shoppers should plan to use the east parking ramp (former Sears parking ramp) and access the store at that entrance.

“The Wausau Opportunity Zone, Inc. will continue to work closely with our community partners, such as the city of Wausau, Wausau River District, the Greater Wausau Prosperity Partnership, the Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce, and the downtown business community to ensure a collaborative process as we move through our next steps in our collective efforts to build the Best Small City in America,” said Dave Eckmann, president of WOZ Inc.

WOZ bought the mall in February 2020 with funding from a pair of local foundations, the Dwight and Linda Davis Foundation and the Judd S. Alexander Foundation, in partnership with the city of Wausau.

WOZ has engaged Chuck Ghidorzi to act as managing director, leading the planning process for redevelopment of the property.

More information will be available at GreaterWausau.org/WOZ in the coming weeks.