MILWAUKEE (WITI) — With a new consultant’s report that calls for expanding exhibit, meeting and ballroom space at the Wisconsin Center, Milwaukee Alderman Terry Witkowski says it is time for state agencies to work together on making Milwaukee’s downtown a more vibrant convention and tourist destination.
Alderman Witkowski will hold a news conference Friday, July 11thto give his take on the consultant’s report and lay out his vision for the future of the Wisconsin Center and the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Both venues are currently entering transition periods.
“These venues are the anchors of what could become a destination mixed-use entertainment district in downtown Milwaukee,” Alderman Witkowski said. “They’re mere blocks from each other, yet their futures are being determined by two separate boards with sometimes conflicting interests. That’s not an efficient way to do business, and development on these sites needs built-in efficiencies and private investment.”
Delivered to the Steering and Rules Committee on Thursday, a consultant’s report calls for creating a unified entertainment district in the five-block stretch between the Wisconsin Center on W. Wisconsin Ave. and the current site of the BMO Harris Bradley Center at W. Juneau Ave. It also recommends expanding the Wisconsin Center’s exhibit space by more than 25 percent and doubling available meeting space.
The consultant projects that a 26 percent increase in event and convention attendance and a 71 percent increase in overnight hotel stays would result.