When our office was on the East Side, unless I had a meeting, I rarely drove anywhere during the day. I could step outside my office and be at Whole Foods in two minutes, Qdoba in three and Beans in Barley in about one.
Now that our office is Downtown, I have even more walkable options, which is good, since parking in a garage really cuts down one's spontaneity for driving around for lunch.
However, when it's really cold out, walking anywhere is a pain, and only now am I coming to appreciate Downtown's extensive skywalk system.
For example, from the moment I left my desk until I set foot in the Grand Avenue Mall's food court (review on the new Jake's Deli coming soon), I was outside for a mere 38 seconds. That's barely enough time to get cold.
I entered through the 100 East Wisconsin building, walked up the stairs, crossed the skywalk over the Milwaukee River, then took the one south over Wisconsin Avenue, and finally west into the mall.
On the way back, I wanted to deposit a check in a US Bank ATM, so I took the skywalk east to the ASQ building, then stepped outside only because the bank had already closed. Couldn't be easier.
Of course, our skywalk pales in comparison to the one in Minneapolis, which spans eight miles and connects 69 blocks. Best I can tell, ours connects eight blocks with two links over the Milwaukee River, and there are a few links to the east, as well. According to an old article I found, the city had set aside some money in the '80s to connect them all, but then Mayor John Norquist killed that plan in 1988.
Still, I'm becoming a big fan of the skywalk system, and I'd like to see it expanded, both in length and usage. How about a happy hour bar crawl, or organized themed parties on each span?
Because even critics who say skywalks keep customers out of the shops on street level have to admit that walking when it's so cold outside isn't fun, either. At least this way, you can get a nice walk in without freezing your butt off, too.
The folks at UrbanMilwaukee did a nice job mapping out the skywalk. Take a look below.
View Milwaukee Skywalk Map in a larger map
Yes andy, the skywalks are handy and much warmer than walking the cold, concrete canyons of Milwaukee. They are so handy that Historic Milwaukee has conducted a winter walking tour of downtown Milwaukee from them for years. Starting at the statue in the Plankington building on Saturday morning, one of our volunteers will show visitors the highlights of downtown architecture and relay some of her history. Check our website for times and other winter events. www.historicmilwaukee.org
1 comment about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published Dec. 2, 2019
Age had taken its toll on my alto sax, unplayed since 1992, so I brought it to Brass Bell in Glendale and asked if I could get it restored. A week later, the Conn sax was shiny and back in playing condition. Now the only thing that needs tuning up is me.
Published Nov. 26, 2019
In the 10 or so years that I've known Steve Palec - as a friend, associate and corporate real estate broker - I thought I knew all his stories. Nope, there are many more. His new memoir, "In Awe," drops on Dec. 2.
Published Nov. 18, 2019
Even though American Science & Surplus has its roots in Chicago - the first store opened there in 1937 - this amazing Milwaukee landmark has been in town, with its own identity, for 38 years and counting. "Each store has a little bit of its own personality," says Kim Stenglein, store manager at the Milwaukee location, 6901 W. Oklahoma Ave.
Published Oct. 28, 2019
Whether you're dining at the Shorewood location, or their "newer" spot in River Point shopping mall, Benji's is spectacularly consistent, and has been so for my whole life - and much longer than that.
Published Oct. 22, 2019
Lake Geneva native Joy Powers has taken a circuitous route to get back to Wisconsin. The "Lake Effect" producer and reporter worked in and out of radio, including a stint at WBEZ in Chicago, before joining the staff at 89.7 WUWM.
Published Oct. 15, 2019
It was 2013 the last time we told you about Live Band Karaoke. A lot has changed for the professional musicians who take regular old karaoke to the next level, not the least of which is a major upgrade in venues. This Friday, Live Band Karaoke will celebrate its 10th anniversary with a free party at the freshly renovated Paulie's Pub and Eatery, 8031 W. Greenfield Ave. in West Allis.
Published Oct. 15, 2019
Turning 40 is a major milestone. But instead of celebrating this midlife marker with black balloons or a pity party, Tiffany Ogle, the co-host of "The Morning Blend" is choosing to make a difference.
Published Sept. 27, 2019
A Madison IT consultant and his coworker recreated the 1977 "Smokey and The Bandit" beer run to and from Texarkana ... except with New Glarus' Spotted Cow. "When we went to work, we were like Santa Claus, handing out cases of beer," he says.
Published Sept. 23, 2019
Tim Dillard, former Brewers pitcher, occasional OnMilwaukee contributor, social media bon vivant, and all around funny guy, is heading back to Milwaukee Friday. This time, the Nashville Sounds reliever isn't playing baseball - he's coming here to unveil a new beer brewed in his honor.
Published Sept. 21, 2019
Unsurprisingly, the iPhone 11 Pro is the best iPhone Apple has ever produced. But, unless you are upgrading from a much older phone, you may barely notice the difference. Here's a full review of Apple's new flagship iPhone.