Construction begins on Oshkosh Corp. global headquarters

Oshkosh Corporation breaks ground on global headquarters, June 11, 2018. (WLUK)

OSHKOSH (WLUK) -- Construction on Oshkosh Corporation's new global headquarters is now on course.

It comes after much debate on the decision by the city to sell a portion of its waterfront property at the former Lakeshore Golf Course in Oshkosh.

"Our heart has always been here, and I'm glad that it all worked out," said Oshkosh Corporation President, Wilson Jones.

A ground-breaking ceremony on the new global headquarters was held Monday.

The four-story, 190,000 sq. ft. building will house up to 650 employees. Jones says the new facility will allow them to expand.

"We're building it for some growth, capacity to grow," he said. "But we're also building it, as basically an institution that our corporation can benefit from."

That includes the Oshkosh community.

Wilson says a jogging trail along the lake and public conference center space are also in the works.

"The first floor is going to be community focused," Wilson continued. "We're going to have a large conference space that can seat up to 300 people."

It comes after several concerns were raised on the decision to do away with the golf course.

"The whole idea was, do we want to have that presence in the community (Oshkosh Corporation)? And I think the answer was resounding, a yes," said Mark Rohloff, Oshkosh City Manager.

In effort to keep the corporation in Oshkosh, the city approved selling a portion of the property to the company.

The deal to sell the lakeshore property for $35 million was voted on by the common council last November.

"The city and the leadership of the city, the city council, recognized and realized the need and value of retaining a fortune 500 company," explained Rohloff.

As for what's next, Rohloff say there will be plans to build on the remaining golf course land.

"The community is really going to have ownership in what ultimately becomes part of the rest of the lakeshore site," he said.

The new building is expected to be completed next fall.

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