It’s been a good run recently for Grant Park Plaza. And that’s good for South Milwaukee.
With the recent opening of Planet Fitness and the soon-to-be open CSL Plasma location, the shopping center will be close to 90% occupied — pretty good when you look at the state of other suburban strip malls.
There was more good news Tuesday night, as the Community Development Authority and City Council approved an ownership change for most of the center, a restructuring that will see a new equity partner come on board and allow for a refinancing of existing debt.
The new equity partner is Great Lakes Capital, an investment firm based in South Bend, Ind., and the new owners of the shopping center — all buildings, including the outlots, minus the Pick ‘n Save — will officially be 2901 South Chicago LLC.
This move will further strengthen and stabilize the ownership of the center, freeing up cash that the owners have pledged to use to resurface/reseal the parking lot, fix winter damage to the lot and improve landscaping in 2015.
These enhancements are in addition to almost $900,000 in improvements the center has seen in the past year, including $750,000 for buildout of the Planet Fitness space. Another $120,000 is being invested in the CSL Plasma buildout. It will open in April.
There is still a 11,800 square-foot vacancy in the main portion of the center — formerly occupied by Wisconsin Health and Fitness — and a space next to Advance Auto Parts in that outlot. But that’s it. And that’s a good thing.