Dave Reid
Plats and Parcels

Is Bucks Arena a Done Deal?

The way the team's owners are buying up downtown land, they're clearly certain the deal will pass.

By - Jul 6th, 2015 11:16 am
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Arena Rendering.

Arena Rendering.

Despite the political turmoil in Madison, Milwaukee Bucks ownership has been moving along as if the new arena deal was going to be approved.

According a Business Journal story by Sean Ryan the Bucks ownership bought two lots near the proposed arena. A 0.2 acre lot at 1129 N. Old World Third St., between The Loaded Slate and Ugly’s Pub, was purchased for $750,000 by Deer District LLC (Milwaukee Bucks) from Jackson Street Holdings LLC. The second lot is just south of Ugly’s Pub.

Bucks spokesman Jake Suski told Ryan in an email that the land will link the new sports and entertainment district with N. Old World Third St.

But more importantly then the two sites linking to N. Old World Third St., according to a story in the Journal Sentinel by Tom Daykin, a key parcel that sits in the way of the proposed arena was also acquired by the Deer District LLC, and they had pay up to do it. The 5,000 square foot lot and building that Kissinger’s Meats is located in, at 505 W. Juneau Ave., only had an assessed value of $217,000 but the Bucks paid $2.5 million for it.

In that same story by Daykin we learn that Bucks minority owner Jon Hammes is also getting in on the action. Daykin reports that Hammes, through HFJV LLC, purchased a 1.5 acre lot, 210 E. Knapp St. which is bounded by E. Knapp, N. Water and N. Market streets, from BMO Harris Bank for $1 million. This site is located just across N. Water St. from the 2.6 acre riverfront site where Hammes has proposed developing three office buildings. Designs and renderings for this proposal have yet to be made available to the public.

Beyond real estate purchases, according to a story by Ryan, the Redevelopment Authority of the City of Milwaukee approved the city’s $47 million contribution to the new Bucks’ arena. The funds will come from two TIF districts. $27 million will be used to pay for a new 1,243 car parking garage, $12 million will assist in the building of the public plaza, and $8 million will pay back an $8 million loan by the Bucks. This is just the first, of many approvals, that the city will need to make prior to final approval of the Bucks’ deal.

As our columnist Steven Walters writes, the state proposal to subsidize the Bucks arena will need support from Democratic legislators and its passage is still not certain. But clearly the Bucks feel it’s a done deal.

Arena Renderings

More Area News

The BizTimes reported that Las Vegas-based MVP REIT Inc. purchased a 0.95 acre parking lot not far from the proposed arena from Progency Capital Partners LLC. The lot at 215 W. Wells St went for $3.9 million. MVP REIT Inc. manages parking lots throughout the country.

Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) spent $3.5 million to acquire a 1.8 acre parking lot from BMO Harris Bank, according to a story by Daykin. The lot is bounded by N. Water St., E. Knapp St., N. Market St., and E. Juneau Ave. which is located across E. Juneau Ave. from MSOE’s Grohmann Tower, a student apartment building.

On July 1st, Ryan reported that Milwaukee County issued a request for proposal for its last remaining Park East block on the east side of the Milwaukee River. The lot is boarded by N. Water St., N. Milwaukee St., E. Ogden Ave., and N. Broadway. This was the site of a proposed $60 million mixed-use development by The Opus Group and Mercy Housing Lakefront. That project never materialized.

In Other News…

  • A bid was published for new construction work on a $122 million hotel, multi-residential, parking garage, restaurant, and retail project in Milwaukee with an October 12, 2015 start date. For long time readers, what project does that sound like to you?

And in case you missed it, we featured the Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons in last week’s Friday Photos.

9 thoughts on “Plats and Parcels: Is Bucks Arena a Done Deal?”

  1. Tracy H says:

    $122 Million hotel eh, hmmm, I seem to recall the Courture being that amount. Interesting!

  2. Dave Reid says:

    @Tracy H Except The Couture has dropped its hotel component.

  3. Tracy H says:

    That thought had crossed my mind. The Westin project, @ $122m?

  4. Dave Reid says:

    I have not confirmed yet but the hotel, cost, and timing makes it look like the Westin.

  5. David says:

    The Westin is $30M

  6. Jeremy H says:

    $122M is pretty rich for a 200 room hotel…their Marriott on Milwaukee was what $50M for 205 rooms? Something doesn’t add up.

  7. Dave Reid says:

    @Jeremy H You’re right that doesn’t add up… hmmm

  8. Dave Reid says:

    I’ve updated the post. The bid had more info than just hotel. With the added info it looks to me like The Couture.

  9. Tracy H says:

    Well, if it does indeed end up being the Couture, with an Oct. start date, that would be huge news!

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