West Bend Mutual Mall site to be sold to Milwaukee developer

City received offer to purchase for $500,000

The Mutual Mall on Main Street in West Bend. (Credit: City of West Bend).

Last updated on May 15th, 2019 at 04:48 pm

The city of West Bend has received an offer by a Milwaukee developer to purchase the Mutual Mall property as part of potential redevelopment plans for the site.

The Mutual Mall on Main Street in West Bend. (Credit: City of West Bend).

West Bend has owned the building, located at 1043 S. Main St., right next door to City Hall, for quite some time, said city administrator Jay Shambeau. The building is currently used for city recreational programming and is also partly occupied by the school district’s Pathways Charter School, but is overall being underutilized, he added.

The city recently received a purchase agreement from ICAP Development, with a purchase price of $500,000. The Common Council agreed to the terms on Monday. Shambeau said the developer now has 90 days to do their due diligence and close on the purchase.

Dan Jeserig, ICAP senior vice president of acquisitions, said his group has no specific plans for the site at the moment. However, he said, ICAP has an idea of some retailers that are interested in West Bend and might want to locate at the site.

“A lot of national retailers are interested in growing in that market,” he said.

Now that ICAP is set to purchase the property, it will bring forward specific site plans to these potential retailers, said Jeserig. He declined to name possible tenants.

Whatever will come of the site, the existing building will have to come down due to its poor condition, said Jeserig.

The city previously purchased both the Mutual Mall and City Hall properties from West Bend Mutual Insurance. Shambeau said the insurance company had owned the building as a potential future expansion site, but company officials eventually went with other plans.

The building was also at one time used as a furniture store and spa.

“Over the years the building has become less and less useful to the city,” said Shambeau, adding that city leaders have been talking about selling the property at least since he became administrator about two years ago.

Shambeau said the existing tenants, including the school district and Weight Watchers, had previously been notified that their leases will end on June 30.

The property is nearby a number of other businesses, such as an Aldi grocery store, McDonald’s and a Panda Express, which was constructed within the last few years, noted Jeserig. He added that a lot of retailers had a desire to locate along Paradise Drive further south, but that commercial corridor has largely filled up. They are now looking to sites along Main Street as another option.

According to its website, ICAP Development is a full-service real-estate development firm, and its principals have experience in ground-up development, acquisition and development, and third-party roles as development manager/owner’s representative.

Projects the firm lists on its website include two Aldi stores, one in Mukwonago and the other in Kenosha; Bayshore Dental in Whitefish Bay; a La Z Boy store in Wauwatosa; and a Walgreens in Franklin.

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Alex Zank, former BizTimes Milwaukee reporter.

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