Downtown Rhinelander Inc.

The group Forward Rhinelander is going out to meet the public as it continues to work toward growing Rhinelander in a positive way. The group formed 18 months ago with a mission to set a vision for the Rhinelander area over the next 20 years so that it stays a competitive, vibrant, and enjoyable place to live for all community members.

One of the co-organizers is Melinda Childs. She says they've held meetings with individuals and groups with a focus on positive assets within the city...

Downtown Rhinelander Incorporated

Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated is hosting a real estate open house so people with an interest in having space downtown can see available properties. This is the fourth year for the open house.

DRI President Dan Kuzlik says the idea a type of one-stop-shop where interested entrepreneurs get to see available properties...

".....we contact property owners who have their properties in downtown Rhinelander for sale or for lease. We get their permission, get their keys and we promote them...”


Members of Downtown Rhinelander, Inc. are spending the next several days meeting with downtown business owners about the soon-to-begin construction called Streetscape.

The city has planned for more than two years to redo the antique underground utility connections and has the funding for it. Part of it is a change in how the city in the future will treat wastewater runoff and water hookups. Many of the older buildings need to have their hookup to the city system upgraded and ready for when the city crews come by. That portion is at the expense of the business owner.


This month marks changes for Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated, but the group's president says they will carry on.

The program began in 2006 as a majority of businesses agreed to assess themselves to fund improvements in the downtown. Earlier this year a successful petition pulled a portion of their funding. Board President Dan Kuzlik says the reduced funding means the end of paid staff, but he says the downtown board remains and will continue on... D


Some changes for Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated.

Faced earlier this year with the loss of revenue from a Business Improvement District, the organization has downsized and will have no paid staff in a few weeks. Several businesses petitioned the city of Rhinelander to eliminate the BID district, gaining enough square footage to make the petition happen. With that revenue loss, DRI determined changes had to happen, says President Dan Kuzlik. But he says they're hoping other organizations will pick up the slack...

Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

Rhinelander is expecting a few thousand people this Saturday...with several events going on downtown.


Downtown Rhinelander Inc. is organizing the 18th year of its Second Saturday in June Car Show.


Executive Director Maggie Steffen says visitors can see more than a hundred cars of all ages...and you can admire them both inside and out.

Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated is hosting an open house Saturday to showcase available business properties downtown.

Executive Director Maggie Steffen says this is the third year for the open house. She says some property owners open their vacant  buildings to prospective renters.....

"....they give us the specs and the keys to their properties...people can start out at the DRI offices. If you're interested in one of the properties we can take you. It makes it easy to see what's available downtown and see if there's a fit...."

Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated hopes to get the Rhinelander city council to keep the Streetscape portion of a downtown upgrade in its plans.

The city is proposing to redo the old underground infrastructure around the downtown next year. Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated helped put together a "Streetscape" plan to redo the above ground portions of downtown.


A petition to cancel Rhinelander's Business Improvement District downtown has gotten the needed signatures to dissolve the district, but supporters aren't done yet. Emotions on both sides of the issue came out at a required Planning Commission meeting Tuesday(3/2).

The city council chambers was filled with mostly supporters of keeping the BID district. The district started nine years ago with businesses paying extra to promote retention and development of business downtown.


A petition passed by some Rhinelander businesses members has received enough support to ask the city to dissolve the Business Improvement District.

A  BID district enables municipal property owners to tax themselves a little more and use the money to make improvements. To end a BID, property owners have to show that owners with more than 50 percent of the valuation want the BID district dissolved. That happened late last week, when Rhinelander business owner and petition starter Jerry Shidell presented the needed signatures to city government.

Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated has announced a change toward trying to find businesses to expand in downtown Rhinelander.

DRI President Dan Kuzlik says they've eliminated an office position and have hired Dr. Sally Latimer of Global Solutions International as a business recruiter. Kuzlik says the organization is refocusing efforts...


Business owners petitioning to disband Rhinelander's downtown Business Improvement District are nearing a trigger point that could mean the end of the district.

Downtown Rhinelander, Inc. began in 2006 as a majority of business owners were concerned the cash-strapped city government wanted to sell downtown parking lots and agreed to an extra assessment. Board President Dan Kuzlik says a few business owners have a large portion of the district. He  says for every dollar invested, $13 dollars return. He says each year, about 19,000 people come to the downtown during events.

Rhinelander restaurants may need better lighting and fresher food.  Those are some of the suggestions coming out of a restaurant survey done by UW Extension and Downtown Rhinelander Inc.

Oneida County Community Resource and Development Agent Tim Brown says researchers conducted focus groups with both older and younger adults…to see how age might dictate restaurant preferences. 


Rhinelander residents and business owners had a chance to see five possible ideas for what a new downtown would look like.

City officials are planning an upgrade of the underground utilities in 2016 with a primary focus on Davenport, Brown and Stevens Streets. Along with the utility work upgrade, the city and Downtown Rhinelander would like to remake how the downtown appears at street level.

Gary Becker from Vierbicher Associates told attendees last night Rhinelander has a major economic impact in its trade area...

A federal grant to fund the underground infrastructure along downtown Rhinelander streets looked dead as of last week, but it appears to be back on again after a meeting Monday night.

The city weeks ago was given positive indications it would get $1.6 million dollars but there was a hitch: the work had to commence next year. City officials and Downtown Rhinelander, Incorporated officials want to do the work, but felt the timeline was too short to have the details worked out to do the job successfully.