The 100 ugliest things in Milwaukee
As much as we love Milwaukee, it's true, there are a few less than stunning sights. After careful consideration, we've compiled a list of places, ideas and events (in no particular order) that certainly create a "Milwaukee style" but perhaps could use slight improvement.
Note there aren't any people on this list; all in all, we think the citizens of this city are exactly what make it great. Milwaukee may be bringing sexy back, but we took a look at our architecture, style and development -- and found a mild makeover may be in order.
We expect a few of our choices to fall under collective agreement, but realize just like beauty, ugly is in the eye of the beholder (Mark di Suvero's Downtown orange sculpture "The Calling" is one of our favorites), and so surely the list is up for debate.
Finally, yes, we're kidding a little, too, so don't take this list too seriously. But do feel free to chime in with your affirmations or objections using the Talkback feature below.
1. Abandoned Tower Automotive site
2. Increasingly decrepit and vacant Prospect Mall
3. Hillside Housing Project
4. Flat tire-inducing unfilled potholes
5. Vince Condella's hats
6. The 20 blocks of vacant buildings on west North Avenue
7. Our inferiority complex with Chicago
8. The funk smell in Fuel before it went non-smoking
9. The 100 E. Wisconsin Avenue building
10. Acapulco Restaurant's rubble
11. Beer guts
12. Racial segregation
13. The "America's Drunkest City" stereotype
14. Bronze Fonz (we love it, but it's ugly)
15. Jones Island MMSD
16. The Pfister Hotel tower
17. The heavy Wisconsin accent
18. MacArthur Square
19. The smells rising from Wisconsin Paperboard
20. WISN-12 headquarters (the building, not the news product)
21. General Mitchell International Airport
22. That parking garage near MATC
23. 770 N. Jefferson St. (but it's getting better)
24. The algae on Lake Michigan
25. Sloppy, illegible graffiti tagging
26. The Greek Annunciation Church
27. John Marshall High School
28. The outdated blue, swirly "M" on DPW trucks
29. Just about every building at State Fair
30. The Marcus Amphitheater
31. The City of Milwaukee's flag
32. Plaza-Plaza strip mall on Brown Deer Road
33. Timmermann Field
34. The increasing crime in and around UWM
35. Zubaz in public (especially in Packers colors)
36. The stench wafting from the Zoo's penguin exhibit
37. The Rave's acoustics
38. Mustaches (including ironic ones)
39. Garbage perpetually rolling down Holton Street
40. Bernie's condo at Miller Park
41. The rust stain on Miller Park's retractable roof
42. The abandoned grain hopper on National Avenue
43. Colorful "art sculpture" in the median along East Capitol Drive
44. The "cheese grater" Bay View Terrace tower in Bay View
45. Downtown's Main Post Office
46. FOX 6 anchor Brad Hicks' ties
47. Mark Belling's and Mike McGee, Sr.'s arrogance on-air
48. The Summerfest administration building
49. The former and still too vacant Pabst Brewing complex
50. Some of the Milwaukee Riverwalk art
51. The Milwaukee River
52. The 9 p.m. cut-off time for buying liquor
53. The Shops of Grand Avenue
54. The UWM Union
55. Old Kohl's food stores
56. The cylindrical "senior silo" apartments on Locust Street
57. Dead alewives on the beach
58. Jalisco's Mexican Cantina
59. The scads of surface parking lots Downtown
60. The empty dirt lots in Park East Corridor (can we at least get some grass?)
61. Curtin Hall at UWM
62. The empty MKE newspaper boxes still on street corners
63. The abandoned grain silos near Summerfest grounds
64. The exterior scoreboard outside Miller Park
65. Scott Walker vs. the County Board
66. Visible "back boobs" at festivals
67. Reuss Federal Building
68. Journal Sentinel building
69. New "Bruegger's building" on Prospect and North
70. The "burnt toast" smell wafting from Alterra when roasting
71. The smell at Grede Foundry
72. Opposition to modern transporation and rail systems
73. The Bradley Center (exterior)
74. DMV emission testing centers
75. The Landmark's bathrooms at 2:30 a.m.
77. Excessive parking tickets
78. Inability to read LUKE, the new parking meters, on a sunny day
79. Traffic on I-94 when the Cubs play the Brewers
80. The huge salt pile below the Hoan Bridge
81. Our high rate of drinking and driving
82. The price of a movie at the IPic Theater
83. View of the new Marquette Interchange from below
84. The brutal winter of 2007-'08
85. Our connection to Jeffrey Dahmer
86. The Hyatt Regency Milwaukee (although a remodel is happening)
87. UWM students vs. area neighbors
88. The sight of "a floater" in one of the county pools
89. Your wallet after filling up the tank with gasoline
90. The new development on Downer Avenue
91. The Midwest Airlines Center
92. The continuous Bon Jovi covers at State Fair
93. The 40-mph speed limit on Lincoln Memorial Parkway
94. Zebra mussels in the lake
95. Most of the houses in Riverwest
96. Sunday morning puke on Water Street
97. The boarded up, once beautiful Grand and Avalon Theaters.
98. Many basements after the June rainstorms
99. "The Ladybug building" at 618 N. Water St.
100. "The OnMilwaukee.com building" (yes, it is a little too '60s)
Why does every OMC writer seem to think Zubaz is standard Milwaukee fashion when I have to think back to 1993 to remember a time when enough people wore that stuff to necessitate its inclusion on a list like this. And mullets... are you kidding me? Whoever wrote this must be from Cudahy. There's also nothing wrong with the homes in Riverwest provided you're not a socially-isolated suburbanite who thinks everyone should aspire to live in condos or McMansions.
I left Milwaukee for good in 1984....as most people do, I retain only the fond memories of the City on the Lake. Thank you for helping me remember why I left. The dark grey sky of the Milwaukee horizon looking east down Good Hope Road still gives me chills. Maybe I'm photophilic, but how do you live without the sun?
And what about the Mitchell Domes? I did not get the chance to read all of the comments so I may be a bit redundant by the post. And the last thing I would have considered to be among the ugliest this is the cobble stone street on old world 3rd street, It may be "old world" but it is not great on the shock absorbers....
the comment about the landmark's bathroom is spot on! love the bars. hate the bathroom.
Some of the items on the list are just cheep shots (mullets, beer guts, Wisconsin accent). It takes all kinds, and not everyone lives a downtown metro/urban lifestyle.
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