Committee Okays Two Downtown Designs
Plus: What will the Bucks big announcement on Friday be?
The Milwaukee Common Council‘s Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee unanimously endorsed design revisions to both the planned Hammes Company headquarters and the Milwaukee Bucks new arena Tuesday morning. Despite being located just a couple blocks apart, the designs couldn’t be more different. Hammes is proposing a controversial classical design for their new office building, meanwhile the Bucks development arm is building an entertainment center and arena that makes heavy use of glass and modern design elements.
At the meeting the Bucks also noted they would be announcing another development for the district on Friday. What could it be?
The Bucks’ Big News
During the hearing on the proposed changes to the arena’s design, Bucks President Peter Feign stated that “this Friday the Bucks will make a very significant announcement for another development in the district.”
One possibility is the long-awaited announcement of the planned apartment building to be built along N. 6th St. on the west side of the arena’s new parking structure. Feign had noted when the arena design was originally approved that the team’s development arm hoped to start construction of the apartments before the parking garage was finished.
Another possibility? The Bucks could be announcing tenants, including the brewery, for the Live Block entertainment center.
Revised Bucks Arena Design
The Milwaukee Bucks arena design team, led by Populous, came before the city’s zoning committee Tuesday morning to secure approval for a series of modifications to their massive arena project. Architect Gabe Braselton of Populous stated that he was there “presenting what we really see as the completion and cohesion of the grand vision for the arena.” Their package of modifications includes everything from modifying the location of trees and lights in the pedestrian plaza connecting the Live Block and arena to introducing a 85-foot long sign on the building’s northwest corner.
The pedestrian plaza will also include a 12-foot tall sign which will read “BUCKS” in large letters. The sign is intended as a bit of place making for the large plaza being built over the former N. 4th St. Braselton had previously told the City Plan Commission that the plaza presents “a great opportunity for not only a monument, but to create a playful sculpture.” Braselton noted the sign will be a great location for fans to take photos, with the east facing sign reading BUCKS to those approaching the arena, and the sign’s west face including seating built on it where fans can sit and interact with the sign and the scene. The seating component will be built of wood.
Alderwoman Milele A. Coggs noted at the end of the hearing that a job fair for work on the project will take place at the Hillside Terrace Family Resource Center, 1452 N. 7th St., on March 9th at 5:30 p.m.
Construction of the $524 million arena complex, which is currently known as the Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center, pending a naming rights deal, is well underway. Learn more about the arena project from our most recent installment of Friday Photos tracking the arena’s construction progress. More information on the design modifications can be found in my article last week covering the presentation of the modifications to the City Plan Commission.
Revised Hammes Building
It didn’t take more than five minutes for the committee to approve a modification to the proposed, classical design for Hammes Company’s new downtown headquarters. The building would be built at 210 E. Knapp St., a currently vacant lot in the Park East corridor on the north end of downtown Milwaukee. As part of developing the five-story, 94,000 square-foot building, Hammes will relocate their Brookfield office consisting of approximately 80 employees to Downtown
Area alderman and committee member Nik Kovac reiterated his support for the design, noting that plan to lower the dome on the building’s southwest corner “makes the dome seem more connected to the rest of the building.” Kovac stated that “I said from the beginning that I think it’s good to have a range of styles Downtown.” Calling that section of Downtown a “nearly blank canvas” Kovac said he welcomed the diversity the building would bring to N. Water St., while noting that he also approved of the other buildings being built along N. Water St.
Additional details on the project can be found in our past coverage.
- Hammes Revises Controversial Design – February 13th, 2017 – Jeramey Jannene
- Hammes Building An Obvious Mistake – November 21st, 2016 – Tom Bamberger
- How Bad (or Good) is Hammes HQ Design? – October 24th, 2016 – Jeramey Jannene
- Hammes Moving Downtown in 2018 – October 21st, 2016 – Jeramey Jannene
- Why Businesses Are Moving to the City – April 21st, 2015 – Bruce Murphy
The proposals will next go before the full Common Council.