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Northridge Mall owners fight demolition plans, propose Asian marketplace

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Posted at 9:06 PM, May 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-28 23:19:34-04

MILWAUKEE — Northridge Mall's owners are fighting to keep the now closed mall from being torn down by the city.

The long vacant property was facing a demolition order until the owner filed an appeal Friday.

According to our partners at the Milwaukee Business Journal, the mall owners, a Chinese company called U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group is asking to build an Asian marketplace.

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Courtesy: U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group

"They are saying that they still want redevelop the mall into sort of a merchandise mart for Asian goods," said Sean Ryan of the Milwaukee Business Journal.

But the Business Journal said the city believes the cost of fixing it now exceeds it's value, and should be torn down. They believe it is a safety concern.

The owners said it can be transformed. According to the Business Journal, the plan would include an area for home and outdoor furnishings and light industrial products. Plus, an Asian food court, and spaces for offices and meeting rooms.

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Courtesy: U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group

But it is also not the first time this idea has come up.

"They have talked about this exact plans in years past and that's why at least, for the local alderwoman she expressed skepticism that after the raze order was issued they said wait, we are making progress to redevelop the property," said Ryan.

The owners did release drawings of their new design for the first time to the public. It has some members of the nearby neighborhood intrigued.

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Courtesy: U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group

"I'd have to see it and then try it out," said Keith Christensen who lives nearby.

"No I don't want it gone. I want like some stores, like you all said, an Asian market, or something," said Kiara Rice who lives nearby.

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Courtesy: U.S. Black Spruce Enterprise Group

The city plans to decide if the demolition will go forward at its Standards and Appeals Commission meeting on June 20.