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 shit and wonderful things.
• When we last checked in with Downtown Milwaukee’s oft-renamed Wisconsin Center (no, not that time), it had been given the green light for a $420 million, taxpayer-backed expansion. The planned expansion will double the size of the current convention center, adding a second ballroom, an outdoor terrace, and additional meeting rooms. Groundbreaking is set for 2021. Opening is set for 2024.
But before that happens, the Wisconsin Center will be used as…a giant COVID-19 vaccination site. Welcome to 2021. Same as 2020. Except probably, somehow, worse.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Mayor Tom Barrett said work to set up the site has already begun, with a freezer to store vaccines having been delivered Wednesday and a secure area set up there.
City officials anticipate the site will open next week, but Barrett said he did not know at this point which day that would happen.
“It is our plan right now in real time to expand this as quickly as we can,” he said. “So this is all happening in real time.”
Up first for vaccinations are health care workers, folks 75 years old or older, and essential frontline workers. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]
• Want more affordable housing? Good, because Milwaukee is getting more affordable housing. Thirteen development projects, totaling 959 new affordable apartments, are currently vying for tax credits from the Wisconsin Housing Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). [Urban Milwaukee]
• The historic UWM Alumni House on East Kenwood Boulevard has been sold to local bigwig Andy Nunemaker. The former GE Healthcare executive will completely restore the 18,000-square-foot house and use it as a private residence. [Milwaukee Business Journal]
• Eighteen homes will be demolished to make way for a new St. Augustine Preparatory Academy building in the city’s Lincoln Village neighborhood. The new building will contain “32 classrooms, a gym, cafeteria and underground parking.” [Urban Milwaukee]
• It’s just like Joni Mitchell said: they knocked down a “notably undistinguished midcentury office building” at 1744 N. Farwell Ave., and put up a surface level parking lot. [Urban Milwaukee]