Fresh Ideas for a Brighter Future: Recapping the Downtown Charrette

Consider the conversation started. I hope it continues.

I joined more than 30 others who attended the downtown South Milwaukee charrette today, and I came away impressed with all of the work the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee graduate students have already put into studying our struggling city center.

And I was even more impressed at how engaged those who stopped by the South Milwaukee Public Library were on this issue.

There was a lot of great, thought-provoking discussion on both what is ailing our downtown and potential solutions Saturday. From streetscaping to business improvement districts to facade improvements to other issues, the UWM students heard all about the areas that will be at the center of this hopefully ongoing debate.

Did you go? If so, I’d like to know what you thought. And, even if you didn’t attend, I’d like to know  your thoughts on the task ahead here — for these UWM students and others who will hopefully pick up the torch when the work of this class is done.

Post your comments below!

4 Comments

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4 responses to “Fresh Ideas for a Brighter Future: Recapping the Downtown Charrette

  1. Rocket Mom

    Unfortunately I had to work and couldn’t make it. So glad there was a good turnout.

    I remember in the 70’s when Bucyrus was booming and they wanted to buy more and more downtown land. Fortunately the city didn’t let them.

    I agree our Downtown needs *something* to attract more businesses and customers. Little spurts and upstarts are happening and a plan to create rentable multi-use space would be helpful.

    Our downtown is one of the best kept rent deals around.

    A balancing act of businesses that compliment each other could lead to success. Like a custom frame shop, next to a coffee shop, next to a florist. A restaurant, next to a bank, next to a realty office or hair salon.

    Foot traffic needs to be kept in mind. Please don’t create a Mitchell street where there is no easily accessible parking. Especially during inclement weather.

    Thanks for hosting this roundtable and I look forward to their recommendations.

  2. Margaret

    I was not able to attend the session Saturday at the library. One suggestion I had that I believe would attract people to downtown is a children’s museum. Besides Betty Brinn, the closest is Delafield, Sheboygan, and Appleton. With a museum comes sandwich shops and restaurants, ice cream shops, toy stores (like downtown Kenosha), PJ Variety has a good idea, but it could turn into Winkies and be even better.

    The flowers/vines in the large stone containers along sidewalks were a nice touch, but they were either not watered suffiently or not enough plants to fill the base. They looked sad all summer.

    I love the small park/sitting area just east of the small barber shop on Milwaukee – turn that into something beautiful and valuable for onlookers/users.

    Too bad Wheel & Sprocket left … anyway to get them back to accommodate the south shore?

    I look forward to hearing future plans/studies from UW-M, and the project brought to fruition. Thank you.

  3. Pingback: South Milwaukee’s Wild Flour Bakery Closes | South Milwaukee Blog

  4. Pingback: Reminder: UWM’s Plan for Downtown South Milwaukee to be Presented Tuesday | South Milwaukee Blog

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