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The Bronzeville Center for the Arts can move toward its next phase of planning for a Milwaukee cultural and education building after securing final state approval to buy the development site.

That approval came Tuesday from the Wisconsin Joint Committee on Finance. The committee endorsed the Milwaukee nonprofit organization’s $1.6 million purchase of the former Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources building at North Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and North Avenue.

The Bronzeville Center plans to demolish the DNR building and transform the 3.4-acre property into a 50,000-square-foot center focused on the art, culture and history of the African Diaspora.

Kristen Hardy, president of the Bronzeville Center for the Arts board, said Tuesday’s approval “will initiate BCA’s thorough and intentional planning process including critical community conversations as we develop project and programming plans.”

Some of that public discussion would occur about two blocks west, where Milwaukee developer Melissa Allen is working with the center to convert a duplex for its operations and build a one-story gallery next door. That space could host meetings to gather input on programs for the new center.

Read more on the Milwaukee Business Journal.