One of the best slides from yesterday’s Public Policy Forum luncheon showed a Flirk map of Downtown Milwaukee. It contrasted, by color, where locals took and shared photos versus photo shares from visitors. And, the contrast was striking.
Visitors, who many mainly stay near the Wisconsin Center, primarily snapped and shared along Wisconsin Avenue and at the Lakefront, near the Milwaukee Art Museum. While locals shared photos from all around Downtown Milwaukee.
This map really shows how we need to better connect our Downtown, make it easier for people to get around to all areas and create more dense areas within Downtown.
I’ve shared the map above and here’s exactly what the Hunden report says:
The following figure is a map of the Downtown area that displays where tourist photos have been geotagged within the city. This map will be an indication of tourist travel corridors and patterns. The blue represents local pictures taken, while red are pictures taken by tourists; yellow may be either.
The primary areas of activity are along the riverfront down into the Historic Third Ward. Also, a major tourist pathway is along Wisconsin Avenue and terminates at the lakefront where the Milwaukee Art Museum is located. The area along Brady Street to the north is also an area of activity, with most being local.
Notice that most out of town visitors stick to where the city infrastructure of the city appears to be the densest, or in other words, where there are few (if any) gaps in the urban fabric. Open spaces between buildings and large swaths of surface parking tend to minimize pedestrians and activity. On the above map, Wisconsin Avenue is the only east west link that is obvious (to visitors) in the center of the built up Downtown area so visitors stick to that street. Wells and State Streets have comparatively no appeal to pedestrians, due to a number of open spaces. With a new streetcar line, this pattern of visitor tracking will likely adjust to include more of the downtown area.
The report, for the record, didn't say anything specifically about photo sharing at the Bronze Fonz. We know it's a prime and sought out spot.
A life-long and passionate community leader and Milwaukeean, Jeff Sherman is a co-founder of OnMilwaukee.
He grew up in Wauwatosa and graduated from Marquette University, as a Warrior. He holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and is the founding president of Young Professionals of Milwaukee (YPM)/Fuel Milwaukee.
Early in his career, Sherman was one of youngest members of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, and currently is involved in numerous civic and community groups - including board positions at The Wisconsin Center District, Wisconsin Club and Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. He's honored to have been named to The Business Journal's "30 under 30" and Milwaukee Magazine's "35 under 35" lists.
He owns a condo in Downtown and lives in greater Milwaukee with his wife Stephanie, his son, Jake, and daughter Pierce. He's a political, music, sports and news junkie and thinks, for what it's worth, that all new movies should be released in theaters, on demand, online and on DVD simultaneously.
He also thinks you should read OnMilwaukee each and every day.