Inside the Global Water Center
Our photos capture a beautiful facility focused on beefing up the city's research and innovation.
The 2017 Doors Open Milwaukee takes place on September 23rd and 24th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Here’s a look at one of our favorite destinations of the annual event in our Best of Doors Open series.
The recently opened $22 million, 7-story Global Water Center, 247 W. Freshwater Way, was available to tour during Doors Open Milwaukee. And the building looks beautiful inside and out. But it isn’t simply about show, it’s about research and innovation.
The combination of investment from both the public and private sectors is designed to make the center a business incubator. Start-up companies will make their home here with the intent of graduating and moving across the street to the Reed Street Yards which is being built out as a water research park. To make that path possible the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee has a floor dedicated to water research, and Badger Meter has provided a flow lab for building tenants to utilize in their development process. Additionally, the Greater Milwaukee Committee, Veolia Water North America and A.O Smith Corp. have located facilities in the building.
The Reed Street Yards is the second component of the larger effort to make Milwaukee a water research leader. The research park will include “purple pipes” that carry gray water, semi-treated water that can be used for tasks such as putting out fires and watering plants, to reduce water usage and create an additional research opportunity for businesses. In a recent article, Journal Sentinel reporter John Schmid quotes Dan Casanova, Department of City Development, on the value of the purple pipes. “It will give us a competitive advantage in attracting water companies,” said Casanova.
As part of the branding effort for the water effort, the city changed the street name from W. Pittsburgh Ave., from S. 2nd St. west, to Freshwater Way.
Our photos take you inside the Global Water Center.