Conceptual plans for a West Allis mixed-use development include new construction along S. 70th St. (Photo: Cobalt Partners LLC)

It took some time, but the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District has sold property that will bring revenue to the district and pave the way for a revitalization of the area on 70th and Washington streets.

On March 29, the school district closed on the sale of 1135, 1139 and 1205 S. 70th St., 7021 W. Washington St., and all adjacent parking properties for $ 7.25 million dollars, according to a news release from the district.

The buyer is Cobalt Partners, the developer undertaking the West Quarter redevelopment project, a plan that will reshape the area formerly occupied by the Allis-Chalmers Corp. A hotel, offices and apartments are eyed for the area.

West Allis-West Milwaukee School Board member Dan Bailey said it's a sale the district has been working for more than two years.

"The project was two and a half years in the making and they (Cobalt) kept postponing it and postponing it," Bailey said. "It's a valuable piece of land, and at one point in time I basically said, let's find out if we can find another buyer for it. But the board kept saying, no, let's give them a little more time."

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RELATED: West Allis schools accept offer for district office (2017)

Bailey said the sale will help the district's finances – a bit.

"However, I don't think it will help financially," he said. "I mean, there is still a lot that we have to look at."

Over the past four years, the district has been working to recover from financial challenges related to a spate or overspending. One strategy has been sold to vacant or underused district properties.

"This sale was part of a rigorous, ongoing effort to responsibly manage resources and improve our long-term fiscal stability," said District Superintendent Marty Lexmond.

The school district will continue to lease two floors at 1205 S. 70th St. building for its administration offices.

The enrollment center and reception will remain on the fifth floor. The school board meeting room will remain on the sixth floor.

The Recreation and Community Services Department also continues to lease space on the first floor.

Contact Bob Dohr at 262-361-9140 or bob.dohr@jrn.com. Follow him on Twitter at @ BobDohr1.

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