By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Apr 11, 2023 at 12:01 PM

The $456 million Wisconsin Center expansion project took another visible step forward on Monday when the newly rebuilt skywalk connecting the convention center to the Hyatt Regency Milwaukee was lifted into place.


According to Wisconsin Center District Public Relations and Communications Manager Charlee Hrubesky, the skywalk – which spans North Vel Phillips Avenue, just south of Kilbourn Avenue – is now in its proper position, lining up on both ends.

The skywalk was initially constructed to connect the Hyatt to the now-demolished MECCA Convention Center. After the latter structure was torn down, the skywalk was removed for rebuilding and replacement.

The new skywalk is 110 feet long and weighs 110,000 pounds. It was lifted by the project construction management team, Gilbane / Smith.


The Wisconsin Center expansion will double the size of the facility, add a parking ramp, rooftop ballroom, outdoor terraces and more.
It will open in May 2024 with a new name thanks to a recent naming rights deal with Baird.

You can see a recent update on construction progress in this story.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.