The Racine Unified School District bought three properties last week totaling about $1.8 million.

Two of the projects don’t have a defined use, but they allow the district the opportunity to grow areas near existing schools. The district rented one of the buildings, but now owns it because it was cheaper than renting it.

They are:

8210 Northwestern Ave.: A five-acre property adjacent to Gifford Elementary School for $297,000. The property has a home on it, but the school district has no intention of using the house. The property was acquired for a potential future use that has not been defined yet.

“We used up a lot of the green space when we put the addition onto the school,” Hazen said. “But we don’t have direct plans for the land right now.”

Former Curtin Medical Group, 2501 High St.: The school district already rents a portion of this building for some of its alternative education programming, but they will bring all of the alternative programs in one space. The district paid $1.15 million for the building and two parking lots. The alternative programs fall into three general categories: credit recovery, transitional and virtual learning.
Turning Point Academy is not housed in the building, but it is expected to move into the building in the fall.

“The mortgage will cost us less than the rent,” Hazen said. “But we will end up doing some modifications to the building.”

7543 Washington Avenue: The district purchased this 27-acre parcel, which is adjacent to the J.I. Case High School, for $325,000 from the Margaret K. Heberling 1988 Trust. The intended use hasn’t been determined. With the Mount Pleasant area growing, the district anticipates potential expansion projects. Most of the land is being rented out to a farmer and the district plants to continue that until a project is planned.

“With us building the new Olympia Brown Elementary School, that was the last empty property the district had,” Hazen said.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.