Solvay Coke and Gas Company, founded in 1902, produced coke for steel production and supplied Milwaukee with gas for gas lighting. At its peak, Solvay operated as many as 200 coke ovens 24 hours a day turning millions of tons of coal into coke and gas. The plant closed suddenly in 1983 with no warning to employees who arrived to find the gats locked and their jobs gone. The coke furnaces were demolished in 2003-2005, but the rest of the buildings remain relatively intact. The site is slated for a variety of development projects, so it is likely more changes will soon come.
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