Developer Plans Apartment Community Near Milwaukee

A Minnesota-based housing developer plans to build nearly 200 apartments for elderly people in West Allis.

MSP Real Estate Inc. has proposed a housing campus of three buildings for about 6 acres along the south side of W. National Ave., between S. 77th and S. 80th streets.

The firm hopes to begin construction by late fall on the buildings, which would take about a year to complete, said MSP President Milo Pinkerton.

The project's largest building would have 120 apartments in four stories for seniors who can live independently, Pinkerton said.

The development would include a two-story assisted living facility with 40 apartments, and a one-story, 32-unit building for people with memory loss, he said. All three buildings would be linked.

Financing for the project would include federal tax credits that are provided to developers who create apartments with below-market rents for moderate-income people.

The project received a preliminary approval Tuesday from the West Allis Community Development Authority.

The project needs additional city approvals, tax credit approval from the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority and completion of its financing package before construction could begin, Pinkerton said.

MSP, based in the Minneapolis suburb of St. Louis Park, owns about 600 apartments in senior housing complexes that the firm built throughout the Milwaukee area, Pinkerton said. MSP also has apartment buildings in Minnesota.

Along with the apartments, the Community Development Authority approved plans for a PyraMax Bank branch at the southwest corner of W. National Ave. and S. 81st St. The branch office, which would be the eighth location for PyraMax, is to open by January, said Monica Baker, senior vice president of marketing.

West Allis officials last year designated the apartments and bank branch sites as a redevelopment area. Most of the land was used by Laidlaw Transit Inc. for school bus storage until Laidlaw's lease ended in 2006.

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