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Milwaukee Announces Winner of Lakefront Gateway Plaza Design Competition

The Milwaukee Department of City Development has announced a team led by Graef will provide the blueprint for a public plaza just west of Discovery World.

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Credit Graef
Plaza ice skating rink rendering.

The plan includes a footbridge winding from the new Couture building to the 1.5-acre plaza. It also includes fountains, greenspace and an outdoor skating rink.

City officials have said they were seeking a "catalytic project," which would create a "world class public plaza on the downtown lakefront" -- following in the footsteps of Chicago's Millennium Park.

Tuesday, Mayor Tom Barrett said, “We have an opportunity to add a beautiful, defining space" that can "become a site that draws people and activity year-round."

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Credit Graef
Plaza rendering at night - view from north.

According to the DCD, the chosen design will be used to seek funding for additional planning and construction. The DCD says plans for the plaza will "change significantly" as the process continues. The public will have the opportunity to give its input.

The Graef team is based in Milwaukee. It includes: PFS Studio of Vancouver, British Columbia; Rinka│Chung of Milwaukee; Dan Euser WaterArchitecture of Richmond Hill, Ontario; and NEWaukee. The team was one four finalists, culled from 24 groups that submitted proposals.

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