Monday, March 25, 2013

15 U.S. Cities' Emerging Downtowns: Milwaukee

Milwaukee, Wis.

The Milwaukee community first turned its sights to downtown in 1988 with the RiverWalk initiative. In the decades since, the city passed zoning changes to encourage developers to erect more housing in the area. In 2002, with the help of $45 million in government funding, the city dismantled the mile-long elevated Park East freeway and replaced it with a landscaped boulevard. According to the Congress for New Urbanism, per-acre land values within the freeway footprint had surged 180% by 2006 from 2001. Since 2000, the downtown population has increased by nearly 26% compared to the greater city of Milwaukee, which has experienced an overall decline. Jobs in the area increased by nearly 4% from 2000 to 2010, and the median income of downtown households has climbed by 38% since 2000, compared to 2% for the city overall, according to Milwaukee Downtown organization.

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