Milwaukee

nate
Landmark Center
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Joined: February 26th, 2013, 2:01 pm

Milwaukee

Postby nate » August 17th, 2017, 7:58 am

Surprised not to see a Milwaukee thread already.
Spent a few days last week there, for the first time. See below for thoughts:

The downtown area seems to reside somewhere between the downtowns of Minneapolis and St Paul in terms of density and vibrancy. It is interesting that the freeways, when built, seemed mostly to cut through existing industrial areas rather than residential areas, so there are some great downtown to neighborhood transitions that are missing from the Twin Cities.

The Third Ward neighborhood is a more established version of the North Loop, and is a really interesting area, particularly with the river running right into the neighborhood. Some good retail in the neighborhood - a mix of local and national chains. The Public Market was a fun place to walk around, right on the boundary of the Third Ward and Downtown - imagine if the Midtown Global Market were located at Hennepin and Washington. That said, it felt more like a restaurant/food court than the Midtown Market - there was very few retail shops and the grocery options were skinny.

The lakefront is a nice place to go for a jog, but with the exception of two museums, it didn't feel like there was really much to do there. It felt under programmed and disconnected from the rest of the city, to me...that said, it is an extremely attractive landscape and seeing the great lakes is always a thrill.

Spent a date night with my wife on Brady Street, which is a place that the Twin Cities doesn't really have a great equivalent to. Lots of restaurants, bars, housing, shops, and a super eclectic mix of people on a two lane street that doesn't have a ton of traffic - a really fun place to visit - if only eight or ten blocks long.

I was told the riverfront in Milwaukee was quite the sewer in the 50's and 60's. It is a dramatic urban setting, but overall felt disconnected from the city. A riverwalk was established in the 70s or 80s, with a walkway and some parkland, but it lacked a cohesive feel and was confusing to cross streets. There is loads of potential there, but it would require a huge amount of money to really pull that area together.

We stayed in a newer development called "The Brewery" on the west edge of downtown, which is an ongoing adaptation of the old Pabst brewery along with new residential construction. This should be a really cool area in a few years, once things start to get fully built out - however it is separated from downtown proper by the old and new Bucks arenas, which each are pretty big barriers from an urban perspective. I was interested that it takes up an area of 20 acres, which happens to be about the size of the Snelling/University site, minus the new soccer stadium. Gave a good sense of the scale of what has to happen to fill in a giant urban site - in other words, a shit-ton.

A starter streetcar line is under construction right now, but it is very limited in scope to a downtown circulator. I'm sure it will attract a lot of ridership and will be a good amenity for the downtown area, but overall it seems to be a localized investment. Our LRT lines are worlds better in terms of connecting destinations across the city.

We went to a couple games at Miller Park - the Twins were in town - and it was interesting to see the cultural difference that an urban vs suburban site makes for a stadium. Tailgating is huge in Milwaukee and the crowd was booooooozy compared to Target Field because it had spent the first three innings getting loaded in the parking lot. Overall, I prefer the urban confines of Target Field but I might be in the minority - my inlaws joined us for the trip and raved about the easy parking, etc. I suspect the median opinion in our population would trend towards my in-laws.

All-in-all - a cool trip. I'd call Milwaukee a smaller, more laid-back, much cheaper version of Chicago, and was an enjoyable place to visit for a few days. Totally recommend for a weekend trip.

KML_1981
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby KML_1981 » August 17th, 2017, 8:45 am

Thanks for sharing! You made it sound interesting. I've never spent anytime in Milwaukee, even though I've grown up in Minnesota and been to Chicago many times. Also, with Madison a closer drive, Milwaukee always seems to miss my travel time. I suspect I'm not the only one. But, I should try to get there for a long weekend sometime! I'd probably enjoy it.

LakeCharles
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby LakeCharles » August 17th, 2017, 9:08 am

It's a real easy pitstop on the way to Chicago. It only adds an extra 5-10 minutes of drive time to go 94 vs 90. I have done that, leaving early Friday, spent the day in Milwaukee, then headed out for Chicago in the evening.

David Greene
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby David Greene » August 17th, 2017, 10:37 am

LakeCharles wrote:
August 17th, 2017, 9:08 am
It's a real easy pitstop on the way to Chicago. It only adds an extra 5-10 minutes of drive time to go 94 vs 90.
Really? Seems like a very large increase in distance.

LakeCharles
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Location: Kingfield

Re: Milwaukee

Postby LakeCharles » August 17th, 2017, 5:25 pm

David Greene wrote:
August 17th, 2017, 10:37 am
LakeCharles wrote:
August 17th, 2017, 9:08 am
It's a real easy pitstop on the way to Chicago. It only adds an extra 5-10 minutes of drive time to go 94 vs 90.
Really? Seems like a very large increase in distance.
According to Google Maps, it is 14 extra miles to go 94 vs 90. So going through Milwaukee is a 3% increase in miles over the other route. Also a 3% increase in time.

David Greene
IDS Center
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby David Greene » August 17th, 2017, 8:46 pm

Huh. Ok, maybe I'll try that next time. I loathe 90.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk


QuietBlue
Union Depot
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby QuietBlue » August 22nd, 2017, 12:24 pm

nate wrote:
August 17th, 2017, 7:58 am
We went to a couple games at Miller Park - the Twins were in town - and it was interesting to see the cultural difference that an urban vs suburban site makes for a stadium.
Miller Park is technically in Milwaukee itself. But I see what you're getting at -- the city covers a much greater geographic area than Minneapolis, so parts of it feel more suburban than urban. It would be like if Bloomington were part of Minneapolis.

It does have a nice downtown area. I haven't spent much time there in a while, but I do want to get back there someday.

SurlyLHT
Target Field
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby SurlyLHT » August 22nd, 2017, 1:15 pm

It's interesting if you look at the population growth since 2000 for Minneapolis compared to Milwaukee. Milwaukee has had a slight declined, although it's recovered somewhat. Versus Minneapolis which has increased decently. It's interesting how differing cities are seeing, or not seeing growth.

schwinnletour
Block E
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby schwinnletour » September 4th, 2017, 10:23 am

One of my good friends lived in Milwaukee 2 miles north of downtown on the lake front. Brady Street is an amazing area for lots of diversity and fun bars and restaurants. There is even a great jazz club and a 24 hour Greek dinner there.

Last time my SO and I visited we rented an apartment in the Bay View neighborhood six miles south of downtown and the main commercial stretch is called Kinnickinnic Ave. It was very charming with independent shops, restaurants, bars, and beer garden in the local park. There was even a co-op. I highly recommend a long weekend there.

Either neighborhood is great!

NickP
Union Depot
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby NickP » May 15th, 2018, 10:19 am

https://www.biztimes.com/2018/ideas/gov ... milwaukee/
The second streetcar arrived in Milwaukee.
I really like the branding for this. “The Hop,” to me, implies it’s easy to get on and off, and good for short trips, and is all a nice punny reference to this cities beer brewing history. :-)

LakeCharles
US Bank Plaza
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Location: Kingfield

Re: Milwaukee

Postby LakeCharles » May 15th, 2018, 10:25 am

It's how all of Boulder's bus lines are named. Hop, Skip, Jump, etc.

MNdible
is great.
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Re: Milwaukee

Postby MNdible » May 15th, 2018, 10:32 am

Barf.


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