Milwaukee Public Schools
Press Release

New development project would host an International Baccalaureate Middle Years school and community uses under plans detailed by MPS, city, developers

A public-private partnership allows for the uses desired by the community including housing.

By - Oct 31st, 2013 06:39 pm

MILWAUKEE (October 31, 2013) — A comprehensive redevelopment of Milwaukee Public Schools’ former Malcolm X Academy site would be the home of a rigorous, college preparatory International Baccalaureate Middle Years school along with improved performance and athletic space for community use and a mixed-use development under plans detailed by MPS, the Milwaukee Department of City Development and developers 2760 Holdings, LLC.

2760 Holdings would redevelop the site as a multi-use project as envisioned by multiple community discussions, a community planning session hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and meetings held by the Milwaukee Board of School Directors. A public-private partnership allows for the uses desired by the community including housing.

Under the plan as detailed in an expanded term sheet:

– MPS would sell the site to 2760 Holdings, LLC — a development company formed by James Phelps of JCP Construction, Inc. – for $2.1 million. JCP has been involved in recent projects including a Milwaukee School of Engineering soccer field and the Moderne high-rise tower. Phelps plans to work with KBS Construction, Inc., on the project. KBS’ recent projects include the Global Water Center and multi-use developments for the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

– The redeveloped site would include an International Baccalaureate (IB) “Middle Years Programme” school. MPS is home to six IB schools, including top-rated Rufus King and Ronald Reagan high schools. The school plan is consistent with MPS’ strategic use of facilities to house in-demand, successful MPS school programs. In recent years, the district has reused 10 facilities for MPS schools, leased 11 sites to charter/partnership schools and sold four schools including three to high-performing charter operators. Just this year, MPS’ strategic use of facilities has allowed the district to add seats at successful schools such as Golda Meir, I.D.E.A.L. and Reagan. 2760 Holdings would contract for remodeling the school space in accordance with MPS specifications through competitive bids for the majority of construction items.

– Community assets including the gymnasiums and auditorium would be available to the community through partnerships with the MLK Economic Development Corporation.

– As a key component in improving the attractiveness and quality of the site and to enhance the attractiveness of the neighborhood, a mixed-use building would be developed along Center Street offering both affordable family/intergenerational housing and commercial space.

– A portion of the existing facility would be taken down to separate the school space from the mixed-use development.

– MPS would pay 2760 Holdings to lease the remodeled school space for a term that matches the financing for the full redevelopment project. Lease payments would be based upon the amortized cost of the renovation of the school and the purchase price of the school portion of the property. The lease terms are designed to protect taxpayers and advance a positive development.

– MPS will repurchase the school portion of the property at the conclusion of the lease or during the lease for $1 or the remaining cost of the school site purchase price and school site renovation cost.

The Milwaukee Board of School Directors is expected to consider the term sheet at a Friday evening meeting. If the Board approves the sale authorization, it would be forwarded to the Milwaukee Common Council because the city of Milwaukee owns MPS facilities.

About Milwaukee Public Schools
Milwaukee Public Schools, Wisconsin’s largest school district, is expanding college and career readiness efforts and continuing to implement innovative reforms that give every student the opportunity to succeed. MPS’ high-quality school options for 3-year-olds to high school seniors feature school climates in which positive behavior is reinforced; certified, highly-trained teachers; 21st-century learning technology for students; and curriculum aligned to the rigorous Common Core State Standards, which set a clear, high bar for the topics students must master at each grade level. MPS’ graduation rate is 14 points higher than the rate for the Class of 2000, its Class of 2013 earned $24 million in scholarships and the district is home to some of the state’s best high schools according to the Washington Post and U.S. News and World Report. More MPS news is available at

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