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Jul. 8, 2013

Blue Ribbon Plans Offices, Student Housing in Downtown Milwaukee

by Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

Construction is about to begin on two developments in Downtown Milwaukee. According to BizTimes, Blue Ribbon Management L.L.C. is planning to develop a five-story office facility and an apartment building for international college students on the site of the former Pabst brewery.

Blue Ribbon CEO Tom Gehl told the newspaper that the office project is expected to break ground in August and to be complete in about a year. The 73,100-square-foot building will rise on a vacant lot northeast of North 11th Street and Juneau Avenue. Plans call for 42,000 square feet of office space and two floors of interior parking.

The student housing facility, known as International House, will  emerge as the redevelopment of the 240,000-square-foot former Bottling House, which is located north of Highland Avenue between 9th and 10th Streets.

The building will accommodate up to 450 students and will include an area on the first floor dedicated to instruction in English as a second language.

For the office project, Blue Ribbon Management has obtained funding from EB-5, the  federal program that provides green cards to foreign investors that invest in job-creating projects. Blue Ribbon expects the approval of similar financing for the student housing facility.

In regional news, BizTimes reports that Cincinnati-based Phillips Edison has acquired the Glenwood Crossings shopping center in Kenosha from Northbrook, Ill.-based Cloverleaf Group. The property traded in an off-market transaction for $12.85 million, or $146.85 per square foot.

Built in 1990, the 87,504-square-foot property is located on a 10-acre site southwest of 18th Street and 30th Avenue on the north side of the city. A Pick ‘n Save grocery store is the center’s anchor tenant.

“We’ve had a good experience in Kenosha,” Michael Basofin, president of Cloverleaf Group said. “I can tell you Pick ‘n Save does very well there. Because of that, it’s an attractive place for stores to locate.”

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