Graham Kilmer
Plats and Parcels

The Couture Still in Limbo

Plus: Plans to convert two schools to apartments advance, more affordable housing in Walker's Point

By - Oct 21st, 2018 11:32 am
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Rendering of The Couture

Rendering of The Couture

The intrigue surrounding Barrett Lo Visionary Development’s $122 million project called The Couture continues.

This week, Tom Daykin reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that city emails, obtained via a record request, show developer Rick Barrett was issued a default notice in March by the City of Milwaukee for failing to begin construction on his 44-story residential tower at 909 E. Michigan St. In order to get out of default, Barrett agreed to a new deadline of Oct. 31. Now, that deadline won’t be met, either.

The development group is waiting on a loan guarantee from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development to complete the project’s financing package.

The transit center for the streetcar’s lakefront loop needs to be completed by 2020, as a result of a deadline imposed by the federal government

The Couture site was formerly a bus facility built by the county with federal funds. When Barrett Lo got that property for a discounted price, $500,000, it came with the caveat that the federal government will require that transit center to be built by 2020. If it’s not built in time, Milwaukee County could have to pay the federal government $6.7 million.

More Schools to Becoming Apartments

Two more vacant Milwaukee Public Schools buildings will be converted to apartments.

My colleague Jeramey Jannene reported last week that plans for the 37th Street School at 1715 N. 37th St. are advancing. And the city revealed this week that Royal Capital Group will purchase the former Phillis Wheatley School at 2442 N. 20th St.

Royal Capital plans to buy the former Phillis Wheatley Public School at 2442 N 20th St, and develop it into 44 apartment units with 38 townhomes also on the site. Previous bids for the school were rejected.

Rule Planning Another Affordable Housing Development in Walker’s Point

Local developer Brandon Rule is looking to turn a few tax-foreclosed, city-owned properties into affordable apartments.

Rule, through his company Rule Enterprises, would purchase two parcels at 1313 and 1329 W. National Ave. from the city. These parcels already have buildings on them that Rule plans to demolish. After which, Rule will have a roughly 1.5-acre site to work with, as Daykin reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, for his $18 million development.

The proposed apartment building would be four stories tall and contain more than 80 units.

Rule is developing the nearby SEVEN04 Place. That 60-unit building, because its financed with low-income housing tax credits, will have 51 affordable apartments.

Food Ingredient Company Looks to Expand Footprint in West Allis

The company Chr Hansen Inc. wants to raze a number of properties next to its headquarters in West Allis.

Nine properties, all next to what is the firms U.S. headquarters at 9015 W. Maple St., would go down to make way for future growth. The Denmark-based firm has no plans for construction anytime soon, they merely are looking to the future, as Daykin reported.

Chr Hansen produces food cultures, enzymes and probiotics. It has roughly 300 employees in the Milwaukee area.

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