Redevelopment Authority approves loans for The Moderne

The city of Milwaukee Redevelopment Authority last week voted to approve $10 million in city loans for The Moderne, a long-delayed 30-story residential building proposed for a vacant lot at the southwest corner of West Juneau Avenue and Old World Third Street in the downtown Milwaukee Park East corridor.

The $60 million project has been delayed for nearly 2 years while the developer for the project, The Moderne LLC, has struggled to obtain financing. The building would have 203 apartments, 14 condominiums, 204 structured parking spaces and 7,500 square feet of retail space.

Under the current financing proposal for the project, the primary lender would be Capmark Financial Group Inc., which would provide financing under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s 221(d)4 loan program, which insures mortgage loans to facilitate the new construction or substantial rehabilitation of multifamily rental or cooperative housing.

The plan includes two proposed loans from the city of Milwaukee, a $6 million loan with 6.4 percent interest and a 4-year term and a $4 million loan with 15 percent interest and a 4-year term.

The loan from the city could help the project complete its financing package and break ground as early as November.

However, the city loan still must be approved by the full Common Council. Ald. Willie Wade, the only alderman who is a member of the Redevelopment Authority, cast the only no vote against the loan last week.

Wade said he wants more time to review the loan proposal and before he will consider supporting it.

"This is an intriguing financing structure that I have not had a lot of experience with," he said.

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