The Couture developers will donate to city’s anti-displacement fund – About Your Online Magazine


As part of the latest change in The Couture’s development deal with the city of Milwaukee, the project developer agreed to contribute $ 100,000 to the city’s anti-displacement fund. Couture has a $ 188 proposal…


As part of the latest change in The Couture’s development deal with the city of Milwaukee, the project developer agreed to contribute $ 100,000 to the city’s anti-displacement fund.

The Couture is a $ 188 million, 44-story luxury apartment tower proposal planned for 909 E. Michigan St., near downtown Milwaukee by the lake.

First proposed in 2012, The Couture has been delayed several times, but may finally be ready to start construction. Based in Milwaukee Visionary Development Barrett-Lo plans to close project financing and start construction in the coming weeks.

Before that, city leaders must approve what may be the final change in their development deal with Barrett-Lo. The change stipulates that the company will cover $ 1.4 million in unused federal funds that go to the Couture public transport hub component. The city may be forced to return this money if the construction deadline is missed.

The $ 1.4 million is part of a larger $ 14.2 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration for the construction of the Lake Hop tram line extension. The line must pass through The Couture transit station.

Councilor Robert Bauman proposed that the anti-displacement fund donation be added during a meeting today of the Joint Council’s Zoning, Neighborhoods and Development Committee.

The $ 100,000 must be paid by one or both directors of Barrett-Lo, Rick Barrett and Tan Lo, at the time of closing, according to the amended agreement.

Committee members approved the proposal, which goes to the full Common Council.

“The bottom line is that we were asked to make a last minute change to the deal on the eve of the closing, and I think it is appropriate that, during the course of the negotiation, the developer provides a little additional incentive to basically redeem this negotiate at the last minute because equity investors opposed potential liability for any of the (federal) funds, “said Bauman.

Barrett-Lo agreed to the donation before the committee meeting.

“We appreciate the support of the city and members of the ZND (Committee) as we work to move this transformation project forward to Milwaukee,” said Barrett, Barrett-Lo’s founder and chief executive, in a statement after the committee meeting. “Current legislation allows us to provide a personal guarantee to cover liabilities associated with TIGER grant funds invested on the website.”

Barrett also said that his company was “proud” to contribute to the anti-displacement fund and its efforts to support homeowners.

THE anti-displacement background is managed by MKE United. It provides reduced property tax for landlords residing in certain neighborhoods in the city that face tax increases due to nearby development.

Barrett-Lo in november secured a loan guarantee from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development on its $ 103.5 million mortgage, which is The Couture’s primary source of financing.

This guarantee put the project on track for a pioneering launch in early 2021. It was supposed to start on February 1, but last-minute negotiations over the concession’s liability for financing delayed the financing closing date.

Paula Fonseca