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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014

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MPL seeks partners for new mixed-use library buildings like the one under construction on the East Side. (PHOTO: Bobby Tanzilo )

Library seeks developers to partner on four new neighborhood branches


The Milwaukee Public Library (MPL) released a Request for Interest (RFI) Wednesday to get input from developers who may want to partner on mixed-use projects to replace four libraries:

  • Forest Home Library, 1432 W. Forest Home Ave.
  • Mill Road Library, 6431 N. 76th St.
  • Martin Luther King Library, 310 W. Locust St.
  • Capitol Library, 3969 N. 74th St.

This is the library's first step in seeking potential partners on mixed-use projects that will be based around new library branches, along the lines of the one currently under construction on the site of the old (and future) East Library and a the Villard Square Branch, which is already open.

"We are excited to hear from developers in the community that have an interest in working with us," said Library Director Paula Kiely in a statement. "Over the next six years, MPL will replace four of our neighborhood libraries with mixed-use buildings.

"This is an exciting venture for MPL and for city residents who will benefit from having a new, technology-rich, 21st-century library in their neighborhood that is also a catalyst for economic and neighborhood development and stability."

Statements of Interest are due by 4 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 30. Complete details are here. An open house and Q&A session with Project Manager of Library Construction Sam McGovern-Rowen will be held, Monday, Sept. 8 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at Forest Home Library.

According to a news release, MPL expects to spend roughly $4.5 million on each of the four branches and $22.4 million have already been identified by MPL, the Common Council and Mayor Tom Barrett.

In related news, MPL is renovating the Tippecanoe Library, 4912 S. Howell Ave., rather than replacing it. Construction is expected to begin next year.

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