Depending on which news sources you follow, Milwaukee is going through either a “renaissance” or a “reinvention.” Or maybe it’s a “reboot” or a “reimagining,” like that crappy Tim Burton version of Planet Of The Apes. However you want to define it, it’s safe to say that Milwaukee is currently building a lot of new and wonderful things.
• You know that big empty lot near the intersection of North and Humboldt? The one on the north side of North, across the street from Adventure Rock and Pick ‘n Save? Yeah, that one. Well, it won’t be empty for long: the site will soon be home to a four-story, 91-unit apartment building. Seventy-seven of those units will be reserved for folks earning 30% – 60% of the area’s median income, and 19 of those units will be set aside for folks with disabilities. Oh, and the ground floor of the whole thing will be the new, 2,500-square-foot Riverwest Food Accelerator.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel explains:
The accelerator will host food-oriented activities—recognizing the neighborhood’s need for access to healthy foods and food education. […]
The accelerator’s programs could feature free cooking and nutrition classes conducted with the help of the Riverwest Food Pantry, according to the developers.
Other possible programs include urban agriculture demonstration projects sponsored by Teens Grow Greens and cooking classes offered by MKE Food School and Milwaukee Area Technical College. […]
In addition, the commercial kitchen would be available for entrepreneurs, including people living at the apartments, who are hoping to start food businesses.
Construction on the building is set for July. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]
• In “new and wonderful things they’re NOT building” news, the Betty Brinn Children’s Museum will NOT be a part of the new Milwaukee Public Museum complex.
“As the planning process unfolded through 2021 and early 2022, budgetary calculations changed dramatically, both due to external pressures related to inflation and updated plans that would have called for additional costs to design and construct BBCM exhibits,” the BBCM said in a statement. “These factors led BBCM to the difficult decision that it should not build and operate a new construction children’s museum as part of this project. BBCM will remain at its current location while it considers alternative opportunities.” [Milwaukee Business Journal]
• In “new and wonderful things they’re still hoping to build despite resistance from citizens and organizations” news, Madison-based FPC Live still hopes to build a new concert venue near the Summerfest grounds despite resistance from neighbors and existing Milwaukee concert venues.
“We are still focused on securing the necessary approvals to allow us to begin construction as early this summer as possible,” FPC Live CEO Joel Plant told the Milwaukee Business Journal. “We remain both committed to our project and excited to bring Milwaukee these state-of-the-art venues it deserves and needs for the next decades of entertainment.” [Milwaukee Business Journal]
• A $4.31 million project to rebuild a chunk of East Wells Street near Cathedral Square Park may have a new component: a “five-foot-wide raised bike lane protected by a three-foot buffer.”
Urban Milwaukee explains:
For much of the street, the bike lane will be raised to be level with the sidewalk, but delineated with asphalt, instead of concrete pavement. The parking lane will be lower, even with the one travel lane in each direction, and provide a buffer between moving vehicles and bicyclists. An eight-foot-wide sidewalk with a five-foot concrete buffer between it and the bike lane is proposed.
Construction on the project is set for 2024. [Urban Milwaukee]
• The Milwaukee School of Engineering is going to build a $3 million softball stadium on the site of its current softball field in downtown Milwaukee. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]
• New beer gardens for the RiverWalk! [Urban Milwaukee]
• Remember the streetcar? Well, since National Avenue is set for a big rebuild in 2026, maybe the streetcar should go down it? [Urban Milwaukee]
• That long-empty, long-useless chunk of the former Columbia Hospital on the UWM campus that UWM owns and that UWM wants to demolish has been granted permanent historical designation lol. Sure, this empty/useless building might stay empty/useless for another 20 years, but at least UWM students can look at it and reflect on “Milwaukee’s healthcare history” and the building’s “distinguishing characteristics of the Georgian Revival architectural style.” [Urban Milwaukee]
• And what did we learn this week? Well, they’re always building something. Isn’t that right, old song from my old band?
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