Virginia Small

Virginia Small has written for publications throughout the United States, was a senior editor for a national magazine, and wrote a book about stellar public and private gardens. She returned to Milwaukee after spending many years on the East Coast. She writes often about urban planning and sustainability issues, parks, public commons and landscape-design history.

Contact Virginia

Recent Articles

Public Forum For Lake Park Bridge

Public Forum For Lake Park Bridge

Public invited to a meeting about the future of historic Ravine Road Bridge

5 Cities With Model Parks Systems

5 Cities With Model Parks Systems

Can Milwaukee learn lessons from them on how to fund its parks?

County Closes Lake Park Bridge

County Closes Lake Park Bridge

Abele administration cites safety concerns, seeks $2 million in private funds.

New Report Estimates Domes Cost

New Report Estimates Domes Cost

$64 million to replace or $14 to $54 million for repair approaches. Abele may favor relocation.

13 Short Facts About The Domes

13 Short Facts About The Domes

Domes task force presented with data that reveals much about the popular attraction.

Op-Ed: The Demoting of the Domes
Op-Ed

The Demoting of the Domes

Once a Milwaukee icon, the horticultural oasis is barely being promoted to tourists.

Donor Pledges $1 Million for Lake Park Bridge

Donor Pledges $1 Million for Lake Park Bridge

But anonymous East Side philanthropist demands closing Ravine Road to vehicle traffic.

The Story of Washington Park

The Story of Washington Park

Often overlooked neighborhood gets its story told in new work of documentary theater.

Domes Makes Most Endangered List

Domes Makes Most Endangered List

One of 11 most endangered, says National Trust for Historic Preservation, which could help rally support.

Op-Ed: Will Some County Parks Be Closed?
Op-Ed

Will Some County Parks Be Closed?

Survey from Abele administration offers this as possible solution. But why?

County Faces Issues When Replacing Bridges

County Faces Issues When Replacing Bridges

Past decisions on bridges created "adverse impacts."

Abele Relents on Domes Committee?

Abele Relents on Domes Committee?

Says he will accept county board committee on Mitchell Park Domes. But will he?

Lake Park Bridge Faces Thorny Issues

Lake Park Bridge Faces Thorny Issues

Citizens narrow options, but funding issue still makes any solution tough to accomplish.

Can Lake Park Bridge Be Saved?

Can Lake Park Bridge Be Saved?

New report suggests restoration is feasible. Public information will discuss six alternatives.

Survey Seeks Opinions on Domes’ Future

Survey Seeks Opinions on Domes’ Future

County asks citizens to complete online survey with nine options for Mitchell Park Domes.

The Power of Common Ground

The Power of Common Ground

Nonprofit advocacy group has had huge impact on city, though some grumble about their tactics.

Transforming a South Side Neighborhood

Transforming a South Side Neighborhood

Diverse Clarke Square area makes changes that echo and may influence other efforts nationally.

Lake Park Bridge Work Group Announced

Lake Park Bridge Work Group Announced

Will it be repaired, torn down or replaced? A public meeting will discuss on May 17.

Back in the News: Meeting Will Discuss Lake Park Bridge
Back in the News

Meeting Will Discuss Lake Park Bridge

Historic pedestrian bridge is deteriorating, meeting will discuss options.

12 Things Will Decide Domes’ Future

12 Things Will Decide Domes’ Future

Politicians will decide their fate, but citizens can lead the way. 12 issues are key.

The Mystery of Abele’s Domes Committee

The Mystery of Abele’s Domes Committee

Who’s serving on his advisory committee? So far, he won’t say.

Duel Over the Domes

Duel Over the Domes

Abele and county board creating dueling committees to address damaged domes.

Domes Are An International Star

Domes Are An International Star

They are a tourist and architectural attraction. Yet there’s talk of tearing them down.

10 Reasons To Save The Domes

10 Reasons To Save The Domes

Their impact on city culture and image is immense.

Experts Question Abele’s Expanded Power

Experts Question Abele’s Expanded Power

Land-use experts say it’s unwise to give county exec so much power to sell public land.

Could Abele Sell County Parks?

Could Abele Sell County Parks?

Abele says he won’t, but state law allows sale of 43 parks. Supervisors move to bar this.

Will Bucks’ Plaza Be Public or Private?

Will Bucks’ Plaza Be Public or Private?

Team wants 4th Street closed, but will this create a town square or just team profits?

County Will Allow Politics in Parks

County Will Allow Politics in Parks

“Bizarre” ban on political activity had restricted free speech for more than a decade.

13 Ways to Revive Grand Avenue

13 Ways to Revive Grand Avenue

Experts offer ideas to transform downtown’s long-struggling mall

WCD Board Says No Twice to Abele

WCD Board Says No Twice to Abele

Board won’t take over Marcus Center and won’t form committee to study idea. Might consider by 2020.

What Will WCD Board Do About Marcus Center?

What Will WCD Board Do About Marcus Center?

Abele wants them to take over arts center but WCD board members would rather wait till 2020.

Marcus Center Cast Into Limbo

Marcus Center Cast Into Limbo

No one seems to agree with Abele's plan to have it absorbed by sprawling Wisconsin Center District.

Brady Street’s Delicate Balancing Act

Brady Street’s Delicate Balancing Act

Residents strive to keep a healthy mix of uses in their densely populated neighborhood.

Op-Ed: A Tale of Two Buildings
Op-Ed

A Tale of Two Buildings

An arena and park pavilion are each called “public-private projects.” But they offer quite different conceptions of the public interest.

Walker Budget Targets Downer Woods

Walker Budget Targets Downer Woods

Provisions buried in budget bill eliminate protected status of conserved forest, the sole natural area on UWM campus.