Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

Harley-Davidson Museum Adding New Building

New event space will replace seasonal tent.

By - May 10th, 2021 01:38 pm
New Harley-Davidson Museum event venue. Rendering by Morton Buildings.

New Harley-Davidson Museum event venue. Rendering by Morton Buildings.

A new event venue will be constructed on the campus of the Harley-Davidson Museum.

A groundbreaking is planned this summer for a one-story building with an 8,200-square-foot event venue. It is expected to be completed in Spring 2022.

The new venue will replace Chrome, a seasonal tent structure used for formal events. It will be built at the southern end of the campus, with views of the South Menomonee Canal and Menomonee River.

Morton Buildings is serving as the design-build contractor, with HGA providing design support.

The existing 130,000-square-foot complex sits on a 20-acre site that draws motorcycle aficionados to the museum and restaurant and many thousands more people to events.

“We’ve all been missing the fun that comes when friends and families gather to celebrate,” said Bill Davidson, vice president of the Harley-Davidson Museum, in a statement announcing the new venue. “And we know there are a lot of people who are looking forward to coming together in person in the near future. This new event space will give our 1903 Events team the opportunity to deliver unique experiences that can only be found on our campus.”

The museum opened in 2008 at 400 W. Canal St. at the eastern end of the Menomonee Valley.

A number of event spaces are already available at the complex, including Motor Bar & Restaurant,  the 1,000-guest The Garage, the 440-guest, second-story Rumble and a series of smaller spaces.

While the new space will be built atop the site of the seasonal tent, the 1903 Events website says the new structure will replace the function of The Garage. It does not list a future event-related use for The Garage after June 30th.

“Whether it’s the wedding of your dreams or a meeting to better get to know your clients and colleagues, the Harley-Davidson Museum offers many options to make your event unforgettable,” said Annie Champeau, director of sales for 1903 Events. “This new space, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Menomonee River, five garage doors that open up to gorgeous adjacent green spaces, integrated AV, and more, will soon become Milwaukee’s favorite gathering place.”

The tent-to-building model follows a similar path that Discovery World pursued when it added a new structure to the north of its lakefront building. A 10,000-square-foot addition replaced a long-standing tent in 2018.

A new, stand-alone event venue building is planned for the Historic Third Ward by Black Swan Enterprises.

Renderings and Site Plan

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