Milwaukee Downtown, BID 21
Press Release

Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 and East Town Association issue “Call for Walls” for new mural project in East Town neighborhood


By - Feb 6th, 2020 02:07 pm
Gateway mural by Emma Daisey Gertel. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Gateway mural by Emma Daisey Gertel. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

MILWAUKEE, Wis. (February 6, 2020) – Have a wall that needs some pizzazz? Milwaukee Downtown, Business Improvement District (BID) #21 and East Town Association are issuing a “Call for Walls” for downtown’s next mural project. The goal is to identify a site or sites in downtown’s East Town neighborhood by the close of Q1 2020. Once the site is selected, a public request for qualifications (RFQ) will be issued for local, national and international artists to submit their ideas for the mural, which is tentatively slated for a summer 2020 installation.

Requirements of the property owner are to provide a public-facing wall with clear site lines, unobstructed from billboards and trees in downtown’s East Town neighborhood, and assist in funding. Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 and East Town Association will partner to provide half of the overall project costs.

In recent years, downtown Milwaukee has experienced a noticeable uptick in murals. Recent completions by the Downtown Placemaking Task Force include “Heart & Sol” by Mauricio Ramirez (2019), “Westown in Bloom” by Emma Daisy Gertel (2019), and “Migration” by Katie Batten and Janson Rapisarda (2018).

In addition, an artist for the 2nd Street skywalk mural project is expected to be announced in the upcoming month with the project slated for completion by spring 2020. Since 2017, Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 has activated $133,500 in public art mural projects, of which over half of the funding has come from the private sector or grants.

“Street-level activation through public art has been a top initiative for our organization,” said Beth Weirick, CEO of Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21. “Property owners enjoy the recognition murals bring to a building, and tenants and guests feel a stronger connection to the community when a piece of artwork can resonate with them. We look forward to adding our first mural in East Town this summer.”

Interested property owners can submit their walls for consideration to Gabriel Yeager, Downtown Environment Specialist with Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21, at Walls will be reviewed by the Downtown Placemaking Task Force, which includes representatives from Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 and East Town Association.

“We’re excited to offer this unique opportunity to East Town property owners. Murals have proven to be a unique way to draw customers and attention to businesses, especially as we prepare the city for the Democratic National Convention,” said Emily McElwee, executive director of East Town Association.

For more information on the “Call for Walls” in the East Town neighborhood and other placemaking initiatives, visit

About Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21
Milwaukee Downtown, Business Improvement District #21, is an organization established in 1998 to support the interests of the downtown Milwaukee business community. Created through private sector leadership, Milwaukee Downtown is a management district organization that oversees 150 square blocks representing approximately 500 property owners in the center of downtown Milwaukee. The organization funds specific initiatives aimed at creating a clean, safe and friendly downtown. More info available at

NOTE: This press release was submitted to Urban Milwaukee and was not written by an Urban Milwaukee writer. It has not been verified for its accuracy or completeness.

Recent Press Releases by Milwaukee Downtown, BID 21

Downtown Milwaukee’s Taste & Toast returns February 26 – March 1

Five nights of discounted bottles and bites available at more than 20 restaurants from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. nightly

Third Annual Downtown Ice CAPE-Ade Returns to Red Arrow Park

Skate with local and national heroes during the third annual Downtown Ice CAPE-ade at Red Arrow Park’s “Slice of Ice” rink

Leave a Reply

You must be an Urban Milwaukee member to leave a comment. Membership, which includes a host of perks, including an ad-free website, tickets to marquee events like Summerfest, the Wisconsin State Fair and the Florentine Opera, a better photo browser and access to members-only, behind-the-scenes tours, starts at $9/month. Learn more.

Join now and cancel anytime.

If you are an existing member, sign-in to leave a comment.

Have questions? Need to report an error? Contact Us