Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Walker's War On Milwaukee Extended To Historic Structures' Program

Like the Milwaukee-Madison Amtrak line whose construction had begun, or the now-shuttered Milwaukee-based Talgo train factory, the blocked/proposed Milwaukee streetcar system or the wipeout of municipal employee-residency requirements, Walker is again saying 'if it helps cities, no' by shutting down a state tax credit program that helps preserve historic buildings.

The projects before WEDC so far include 10 potential developments in Milwaukee, including a John Pritzlaff Hardware Co. building just south of downtown; the Milwaukee Paper Box Building at 1560 W. Pierce St.; and 700 Lofts on W. Michigan St. Other projects are being proposed for cities around the state such as Madison and Racine and smaller communities like Ashland and Rice Lake in Barron County.
Thus strengthening neighborhoods, commerce, employment in urban areas - - where, yes, Democratic voters tend to live, work and congregate.

And did you catch that reference to the John Pritzlaff Hardware Co. in Milwaukee. Did Walker miss the rave review of that project written by our city's historian, John Gurda?

Walker was Milwaukee County Executive for eight years or so, and had an office campaign outpost in the downtown at the Courthouse, but his overall experience in town was an unpleasant one, his interest in any development or job creation in the city was nil, and he could not wait to leave Milwaukee for the Governor's Mansion in Maple Bluff.

And don't think the new owners of the Milwaukee Bucks won't get the 'Dis-Milwaukee/Cities' message.

He won't lift a finger to use a new, or even rehabbed Arena as a downtown business catalyst.

After all, he's the one who said in front of an exurban, Oconomowoc Lake partisan Waukesha County crowd during the 2012 recall campaign that he didn't want Wisconsin to become another Milwaukee.

Message delivered.

And, by the way, if the Walkerites are really concerned about the tax credit financing, why did they flush millions down the toilet on an airplane manufacturer that hasn't done anything except still its employees and state taxpayers?


Anonymous said...

Boo hoo, forget that Milwaukee is one of the biggest economic basket cases in America!

Let's spend money promoting a mythical past!

People today be damned!

REAL PROGRESSIVES (tm) think buildings and a history based on lies is much more important than taking care of today's citizens.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

The Historic Tax Credit program is one of the most effective public/private partnership programs in the country. The projects it helps to fund become economic generators and often revitalize the neighborhoods around them. And preserving buildings actually does, you know, take care of people in that the buildings are occupied by people.

If Milwaukee is such a basket case, why is the population growing?

"mythical Past"? How, exactly, is an existing building 'mythical'? For many years, these buildings were stupidly written off as old and unusable, and simply torn down to be replaced with parking lots. Serving a building that is no longer there. New buildings rarely replaced them, and when they did, they were often poorly designed and built, and hardly served as replacements for the hardy structures that used to be there. Thankfully, the Historic Preservation movement reversed the trend, and now historic buildings serve as loft residences, schools and offices and are in high demand.

Anonymous said...

We have homes in Milwaukee and Madison. We love both cities. Milwaukee is highly walkable, has great restaurants, has festivals galore and is full of energy. Madison our main home has much of the same. Cities should be celebrated for their attractions, for being job centers and for being efficient in terms of transportation and energy. Scott Walker has failed in many regards, but his failure to understand the importance of Milwaukee and Madison to the state are high among them.