With the East Branch Library all ready and set to open tomorrow, the Milwaukee Public Library (MPL) has now set its eyes on its next redevelopment project: the Forest Home Library. However, it would like your input first.
Community members are invited to attend a public MPL Building and Development committee meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 2, beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the Forest Home Library, 1432 W. Forest Home Ave. The purpose of the meeting is to hear and discuss potential proposals for the redevelopment of the library into a mixed-use building.
There are two proposals from two different development teams currently on the table.
The first comes from the development team of Cardinal Capital and Journey House, whose proposal includes a mixed-use building with 51 units of affordable housing – 24 for youths aging out of foster care – a 16,500-square foot library and dedicated on-site parking for library users. The proposal also notes tearing down a Dental Associates building and rebuilding on the site located at 1135 S. Cesar Chavez Dr.
The second plan comes from the development team of Gorman USA, Mitchell Investment Properties and VJS Construction. The team's proposal includes a 15,000-square foot library, 33 units of affordable housing and dedicated on-site library parking for library users. The proposal would involve renovating the "Hills Building" at 930 W. Mitchell St.
Both development teams will apply for tax credits.
In addition to the committee meeting, residents and community members are invited to visit the Milwaukee Public Library's website to learn more about the two Forest Home proposals and take a survey.
After hearing the two proposals and taking the comments and feelings of the community into consideration, the committee may select one development plan from the meeting to recommend and move forward to the Library Board. If so, the full Library Board of Trustees would consider and discuss the selected proposal at a special meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 16 at 4:30 p.m.
MPL plans to begin construction on the new mixed-use library building in the fall of 2015.