It’s not uncommon for libraries to have sales to raise a little money by selling books discarded from their stacks. But right now you can submit a proposal to buy an actual library.
That’s right, the City of Milwaukee’s Department of City Development has issued a request for proposals for the former Forest Home Branch Library, 1432 W. Forest Home Ave.
Asking price? $650,000.
When the city built a new neighborhood library at 9th and Mitchell last year as part of a new mixed use development, the 14,500-square foot Forest Home branch – which opened in December 1966 when the building that’s for sale was completed – was closed, its collection moved to the new branch.
So, no, you don’t get the books.
But the modern single-story building has a striking design and comes with a parking lot. It was designed by architects von Grossmann, Burroughs, Van Lanen and Associates.
What the city won’t let you open there is a smoke shop, a pawn shop, a gun store, a liquor store, a payday or auto-title loan center, a parking lot, a medical service building or a place that sells or services cars.
But, among the list of suggested uses are some good ones, including a recording studio or restaurant, as well as offices, a retail shop, a catering business, a bank, a doctor’s or dentist’s office or a personal services business.
The RFP for this property closes at 3 p.m. on Aug. 30.
This was my neighborhood library when I moved to to Milwaukee, but, hey, don't let that affect your decision.
You can find an assessment, a historic land use report and other documentation for the former library here.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.