Every day, I drive along the northern border of the Haymarket neighborhood and I wonder why it's so neglected. Sure, there's activity there (see below) – the neighborhood is hardly a secret – but it seems ripe for so much more.
Since the Park East freeway spur no longer slices it off from Downtown, Haymarket can be a vibrant bridge not only between Downtown and Bronzeville but also between those areas and the booming (former Pabst) Brewery complex and Brewers Hill, too.
The neighborhood is adjacent to Schlitz Park, which edges closer and closer to full occupancy. On King Drive, in Haymarket, are the Park East Enterprise Lofts. There's a new park and bank branch along McKinley Boulevard, across from National Ace Hardware, the city's best hardware store. Bartolotta Restaurants is headquartered in the neighborhood and so is Miller Bakery.
Across the Park East is the Aloft Hotel and the Moderne residential tower. There's new development on the western edge, including a new $21 million Sojourner Family Peace Center building going up across 6th Street in Hillside at Walnut.
Across Walnut, in Bronzeville, there's a new development on tap for the old Garfield Avenue School.
In all of the discussions of the siting of a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks, the discussion has been about connecting to Wisconsin Avenue and points south of the current Bradley Center, or to the river. But, let's not ignore the other side.
A new arena on the land north of the Bradley Center – which appears to be the favored location now –and a range of related mixed-use developments in the Park East corridor could cause development in Haymarket to go, well, haywire.
There's some amazing vintage building stock that could be transformed and there are a number of vacant sites – mostly surface parking lots – that would appear ripe for construction. Look at the satellite view in Google Maps and Haymarket land looks more empty than not. Much like the Third Ward, not all that long ago, th…Read more...