Journal Sentinel building going back on the market

Entire downtown city block for sale

Journal Media Group
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel offices and former Journal Media Group headquarters in downtown Milwaukee.

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 04:52 pm

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s long-time downtown headquarters, Major Goolsby’s restaurant and the 3-acre block both properties occupy will be put on the sale block in May, opening up an opportunity to develop an entire city block near the new Milwaukee Bucks arena.

Journal Media Group
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel offices and  headquarters in downtown Milwaukee.

CBRE is marketing the project for Gannett, which owns the six-story Journal Sentinel building, 333 W. State St., an attached four-story building, Major Goolsby’s, 340 W. Kilbourn Ave., and a 0.57-acre surface parking lot located at the intersection of North 4th Street and West State Street.

A deal was reportedly in the works with ProVisons LLC, a Bloomfield Hills, Michigan-based group to purchase and redevelop the 437,470-square-foot Journal Sentinel building into offices for the newspaper and other tenants with street-level retail, but at the end of March, the Journal Sentinel reported the contract fell through.

The block is directly across the street from the BMO Harris Bradley Center, which is slated to be demolished this summer, following the annual Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. convention.

The Milwaukee Bucks have not announced plans for the Bradley Center site.

The Journal Sentinel block, outlined in purple, will be up for sale.

Patrick Gallagher, executive vice president with CBRE, who is marketing the property, said he hasn’t spoken to anyone from the Bucks, but he suspects there will be some interest in the Gannett property from the Bucks ownership group.

Another potential buyer could be the Milwaukee Public Museum, which announced last year it is looking for a new downtown location.

“Any number of entertainment options could go there,” Gallagher said. “It’s really up to the developer. The block provides a blank canvas for people’s imaginations to go wild. How often is a full city block in Milwaukee available where there are already a lot of exciting things happening?”

As far as the current tenants staying, Gallagher said it will depend on the negotiations with the new owners.

“The (Journal Sentinel) property will be redeveloped,” Gallagher said. “I suspect there is a chance they will be somewhere else. When that will be, I can’t say, but they are not using the space efficiently now.”

The future of Major Goolsby’s will be up to the new owner, Gallagher said.

Over the next two weeks, CBRE will finish its marketing materials for the property. CBRE will receive offers from prospective buyers for about a month before presenting the offers to Gannett. A price has not been set.

“We’ll see how the market responds,” Gallagher said. “There is a lot of capital in the market place and Milwaukee is a vibrant community with a strong economy. I imagine demand will be strong and we will be able to develop something fantastic.”

Representatives for the Journal Sentinel could not immediately be reached for comment.

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