City of Milwaukee lists Bronzeville site for sale

Located at Sixth and North, area identified as 'catalytic site' in planning study

Sixth & North development site. Google satellite image obtained from city RFP
Sixth & North development site. Google satellite image obtained from city RFP

Last updated on July 21st, 2021 at 01:56 pm

The city of Milwaukee is seeking private developers interested in buying and redeveloping a vacant city-owned site northwest of West North Avenue and North Sixth Street, in the Bronzeville district.

According to a request for proposals, the development site consists of eight lots. The combined lot size is approximately 48,725 square feet. There is one small building on the site, otherwise the rest is vacant land.

It was determined to be a “catalytic site” for development in a recent planning study entitled, “Moving Milwaukee Forward through Transit Oriented Development.” The 600 block of North Avenue was also identified as one of six “opportunity sites” in a 2013 Bronzeville Area Redevelopment Charrette sponsored by the city and UW-Milwaukee School of Architecture and Urban Planning.

According to the RFP, preliminary ideas for the site include a mix of uses, such as apartment, entertainment and retail.

Specific acceptable uses include a boutique hotel, conference center with banquet hall, mixed-use development with first-floor retail, theater with open plaza or any uses that contribute to the Bronzeville district. The city will not consider such uses as parking lots, pawn shops, daycares, tobacco shops, food pantries, gun shops, liquor stores, payday lending stores or check-cashing facilities.

The city’s asking price for the site is $300,000.

Responses are due to the city by noon on Thursday, Oct. 7, according to a public notice.

The city notes the site is near other significant ongoing or recent commercial development projects. Pete’s Fruit Market opened in September 2017 at the northwest corner of North Avenue and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, providing an anchor grocery store for the neighborhood. And in May 2018, the Griot Apartments opened. The mixed-income housing development is also home to America’s Black Holocaust Museum.

Further south along King Drive is the $100 million ThriveOn King development, at the southwest corner of Garfield Avenue and King Drive.

“This is the ideal time to invest in Bronzeville,” the RFP states. “There are many exciting new developments happening in and near Bronzeville.”

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Alex Zank covers commercial and residential real estate for BizTimes. Alex previously worked for Farm Equipment magazine and also covered statewide construction news at The Daily Reporter. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, where he studied journalism, political science and economics. Having grown up in rural western Wisconsin, Alex loves all things outdoors, including camping, hiking, four-wheeling and hunting.

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