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Milwaukee’s Highway Expansion Will Make a Food Desert Even Worse

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Temporary highway directional signs in Milwaukee

Simply construct another lane. It’ll repair visitors!
Picture: Raymond Boyd (Getty Photographs)

The Wisconsin Division of Transportation (WisDOT) plans to make bigger a three.5-mile stretch of Interstate-94 in Milwaukee. The $1.2 billion growth would see the freeway widened from six to 8 lanes between seventieth and sixteenth Streets within the town. WisDOT claims the modernization challenge would scale back congestion and chase in this segment of I-94 which passes American Circle of relatives Box, the house of the Milwaukee Brewers baseball workforce.

Together with totally ignoring the concept that of brought about call for, the I-94 growth challenge has confronted important backlash from the communities adjoining to I-94. Many of those marginalized neighborhoods could be getting double-tapped after the freeway’s preliminary development within the Sixties.

A type of impacted neighborhoods is Piggsville. Piggsville sits on an city peninsula with I-94 to the south, the Menomonee River to the west, and Wisconsin Street and the Molson Coors brewery to the north. There aren’t any supermarkets, grocery retail outlets or fast-food eating places in Piggsville. It’s a meals wasteland the place the one native position to shop for meals is a gasoline station. Any commute to shop for meals on this segment of town with no automobile calls for a mile-long stroll to and again.

City Milwaukee reported that the growth of I-94 would consequence within the demolition of the group’s gasoline station. An pressing care middle and a Black-owned bar would even be torn down to house the challenge.

There’s a coalition of neighborhood organizations advocating for an alternate modernization challenge referred to as Repair at Six. The plan would name for the freeway to be repaired however stay at six lanes. The price range for freeway growth could be diverted to increasing Milwaukee’s public transportation gadget on this space of town, together with a brand new bus speedy transit line. Preferably, this plan would scale back call for on I-94 and make adjoining communities more secure for pedestrians and bicycle riders. Repair at Six would even be $40 million inexpensive than the eight-lane growth.

On the other hand, the Milwaukee County Board voted towards a non-binding Repair at Six solution the previous day. The solution didn’t move by means of a unmarried vote. Reputedly, federal intervention will be the best way to avert the eight-lane growth. Making an allowance for the federally-funded challenge to take away I-375 in downtown Detroit, a transformation of path wouldn’t be out of the query.

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