The Bronzeville Center for the Arts is among the Milwaukee developments that could receive money from the state, with Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers’ capital budget recommending $5 million.
The overall project is expected to cost $54.9 million, and would create an about 40,000-square-foot facility dedicated to African American art with exhibit and theater space, classrooms and a store for local artists to sell their work. The project would replace the former Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources building at 2312 N. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive that could be torn down later this year.
“It’s going to be a heavy lift to open an arts center of this magnitude,” said Kristen Hardy, president of the Bronzeville Center.
Hardy said the $5 million proposed for the state’s upcoming biennial capital budget “is going to help drive us forward in a big way.” The remainder of the project budget would be financed through donations.
“The BCA sees a project like this being a state asset,” Hardy said. “We look at it as good growth for economic development. It’s an opportunity to create new jobs.”
The center currently is in its planning and design phase. Organizers in January announced the design team includes Peter Cook of HGA’s Washington, D.C., office, an architect of national caliber. Cook is partnering with Isaac Menyoli, president of M&E Architects+Engineers in Milwaukee, to design the center.