Urban Milwaukee Burns, Will Rise Like a Phoenix
Tragedy strikes our publication, but optimism abounds.
It’s been a tragic day, a trying week and a difficult year.
While a pandemic continues to claim thousands of lives across the globe and a protest movement grows in a push for justice and equality, Urban Milwaukee has been struck by tragedy.
Early Sunday morning a fire started in the Colby-Abbot Building, our home at 755 N. Milwaukee St. While it did not start in our office, our space was heavily damaged as firefighters rushed to put out the blaze.
We entered our second-floor space to find desks on top of one another, shelves thrown across the room, a partially melted printer and plenty of water.
We are thankful to members of the Milwaukee Fire Department for containing the fire, something that consumed over 30 firefighters for hours. We don’t know of any injuries and for that we are grateful. We are relieved to know the fire appears accidental, with no evidence of foul play.
Our sister business Urban Milwaukee: The Store, a Milwaukee-themed gift shop, also lost all of its inventory and virtually all of its fixtures. With only a small bathroom dividing the store from the fire, what isn’t water damaged is heavily smoke damaged.
We must keep things in perspective. While there will be costs, both financial and of our limited time, the spotlight must remain on the defining issues in our community. We will continue to cover the pandemic and protests like we have before, hitting the streets to listen to what people have to say and analyzing the data to evaluate how Wisconsin’s fight against COVID-19 is going.
We need your support to rise again. We need your support to grow into a bigger voice for the city. We need you to become a paying member.
Your membership dollars go towards people, not profits. They help us pay more freelancers, turn freelancers into full-time reporters, upgrade our website and ultimately to continue to turn the spotlight on the city and its residents.
While a fire has devastated us, it won’t stop us. Your membership dollars continue to go to pay our staff, all of whom will continue to work remotely.
Amidst the chaos, we learned that Sunday, by 11:30 a.m., we had already eclipsed our biggest day of traffic in history. Our persistent coverage of the protest marches into the wee hours of the night has sent our traffic soaring this week.
Now if you’ll excuse us, it’s time to get back to work.
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