Northridge Mall demoliton remains on hold, owner in contempt

A Milwaukee County judge on Tuesday, Jan. 24 found the owner of Northridge Mall in contempt of court for failing to secure the property.

The owner, US Black Spruce Enterprise Group, is appealing an order to raze the shuttered property. The city of Milwaukee is trying to move forward with plans to demolish it.

A witness said Northridge Mall has not been secured in the ways required by a previous court order. The judge recognized the problems the city has faced with the "absentee ownership" of the property.

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"Nevertheless, while it's an obstacle, the court is not going to back off," said the judge. "I will continue to make sure that the courts orders are followed, and that includes the courts orders to raze the property."

In December, city of Milwaukee officials said it would cost about $15 million to tear down the decaying mall – money the city said it does not have. At that time, Black Spruce had already been sanctioned close to $200,000 for failing to secure the property. It will owe nearly $1 million in outstanding property taxes in February 2023, according to the city.

The future of the mall, at least for the time being, will continue to be litigated in court.