Downtown Milwaukee Postal Service property is for sale

The downtown Milwaukee Postal Service distribution, mail processing and post office facility, a 1.1 million-square-foot complex located at 341 W. St. Paul Ave., is for sale, according to commercial real estate brokerage DTZ Barry, which is listing the property.

The property is available on an investment sale basis. It is owned by Menomonee RP LLC, according to city records. The property is leased by the U.S. Postal Service, which has occupied the facility since 1970.

The asking price for the property is $12.8 million, according to DTZ Barry. The assessed value of the property is $19.5 million, according to city records.

The downtown Postal Service facility sits on a prominent 9.3-acre site along the north side of the Menomonee River, between the Intermodal Station and the Historic Third Ward and on the planned route for the downtown Milwaukee streetcar project.

“This is one of the most significant properties in Milwaukee, both as an investment and with future redevelopment potential,” said Kurt Van Dyke of DTZ Barry.

The Postal Service recently exercised an option for a multi-year lease renewal, Van Dyke said.

“Their rent is very reasonable,” he said. “Their rent is way below the market.”

Since 2012 the Postal Service has made significant investments to the facility including a new roof, 40,000 square feet of office space, new lighting and improvements to the building’s HVAC systems, Van Dyke said.

The Postal Service has faced challenges as communication has become more electronic. Some have wondered if the downtown Milwaukee Postal Service facility would become a redevelopment opportunity.

“It appears (the Postal Service is) going to stay there for quite some time,” Van Dyke said. “I think (the property) is a redevelopment opportunity, but I’m guessing that opportunity will not present itself for another 10 years.”

In 2008 the Postal Service announced plans to abandon the downtown Milwaukee facility and replace it with a new 820,000-square-foot mail distribution and processing center that was to be built in Oak Creek. However, the plans for the Oak Creek facility never moved forward and the Postal Service has maintained operations at the downtown facility.

Last year the Postal Service said it would close its Madison processing and distribution center and move the work to the Milwaukee facility.

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