RFP issued for Fourth and Wisconsin site downtown

City looking for transit-oriented development

The 2-acre parcel at Fourth Street and Wisconsin Avenue has two proposals to redevelop it.

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 05:02 pm

The Redevelopment Authority of the City of Milwaukee officially issued a request for proposal Wednesday for a 2-acre parcel at Fourth Street and Wisconsin Avenue in the hopes of attracting a transit-oriented, mixed-use development.

The long-vacant site, located next to the Shops of Grand Avenue and across the street from the Wisconsin Center, will be located on both a proposed Milwaukee streetcar route and the bus rapid transit line. The streetcar route is planned to run through the Fourth and Wisconsin site, so a portion of the site must be reserved for the streetcar track, boarding platforms and an associated plaza, the RFP states.

The city’s asking price for the site (at 401-441 W. Wisconsin Ave.) is $4.6 million, which will be reduced proportionally, based on the size of the public plaza and streetcar easement area.

The RFP indicates the development should take advantage of both the streetcar and the bus rapid transit line, calling the site one of the most “unique transit-oriented development opportunities in the Midwest.”

The RFP also states that “tax incremental financing or other city assistance is not available for development of the site. The city will separately fund all streetcar-related infrastructure.”

City officials are hoping to build on the momentum of development occurring in downtown Milwaukee to finally attract a major development to the Fourth and Wisconsin site.

“Downtown Milwaukee is undergoing an extraordinary renaissance with nearly $3 billion in projects completed since 2005, $1 billion under construction and another $1.3 billion in advanced planning stages,” according to the RFP. “In the greater downtown area, over 9,500 housing units have been added since 2004 and over 1,300 hotel rooms have been added since 2008.”

Across the street from the site, Bostco LLC, an affiliate of Wispark LLC, has listed the building, at 331 W. Wisconsin Ave. for sale.

Proposals for the Fourth Street and Wisconsin Avenue site will be accepted until Sept. 30. The city will have the option to roll it over if officials are not satisfied with the quality of applications.

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