Holy landmark teardowns, Batman! To remove the Hoan Bridge, named in honor of Milwaukee’s last great Socialist Mayor Daniel W. Hoan, would be quite a feat. But it does bear consideration. The sheer cost of maintaining the bridge is one factor. I honestly don’t know what it costs or what it takes. I’m grateful that it is there and it seems to hold up all right, but like any human-made work, it will eventually have to come down. But, does it need to come down? Seems like the darn thing just got finished. Long-time Milwaukeeans will remember when it was the “bridge to nowhere” for seven years. (Mayor Hoan must have been spinning in his grave the whole time!)
We need a lot more documentation of the costs and benefits of demolishing the bridge. Also, it’s part of a federal highway, so we need to make sure los federales are good with it. Also consider the potential benefits of removing it. If more land was opened up, that could be good for development as commercial space or greenspace. It could be a way to get a much-needed bike and pedestrian path. And if it can make way for more shipments to and from the Port of Milwauke, that sounds all right too. Just don’t let any more zebra mussels in, eh?
Update: Links help, eh? In case you missed it, here’s a link to the Business Journal article (published by American City Business Journals, Inc).
Also: James Rowen has written some commentary on this as well.