Bay View’s Proposed Wheel Park Now Slated for Sijan Playfield

January 3, 2019

By Katherine Keller

Bay View Neighborhood Association has changed direction with its plans for a Bay View Wheel Park. Originally destined for Humboldt Park, the all-ages BMX, scooter, skates, and skateboard venue is now slated for the upper field of Sijan Playfield. 

The upper field is bordered on the south by Milwaukee Forge, South Nevada Street on the west, and Lake Parkway on the east.

BVNA’s wheel park project leader Nichole Williams originally contacted MPS in 2010 or 2011 but it showed little interest, she said. Instead, she approached Milwaukee County Parks, hoping to convince them to allow BVNA to construct it in Humboldt Park. MPS owns Sijan Playfield.

A preliminary rendering of a feature of a proposed wheel park for Sijan Playfield. Courtesy Milwaukee Public Schools

After several years of failing to reach an agreement with Milwaukee County Parks, which owns Humboldt Park, she determined that its barriers were too cumbersome. 

She approached MPS in April 2018 and she said it welcomed the idea. BVNA and MPS are currently in the early stages of discussing the project and nothing is finalized.

If the two parties reach a consensus, BVNA would fund the project, and when completed and paid for, it would gift the wheel park to MPS.

The plan involves two, possibly, three phases. The first is replacing the existing soccer field with the wheel park, resurfacing the adjacent basketball court, and creating a replacement lighted soccer field in the lower Sijan fields. 

The area outlined in yellow is the upper level of Sijan Playfield where the basketball court and soccer field are located. The wheel park would replace the soccer field, the court would be surfaced, and the soccer field moved to the lower level of the park. Annotated, Google Maps

The estimated Phase One cost $250,000, Williams said. BVNA has already raised $50,000. The remainder would be acquired through grants, sponsorships and donations. 

Phase Two would improve the playground and modernize it as an all-abilities facility.

A potential Phase Three would make improvements to the bathrooms, if necessary, based on use.

Williams noted that unlike Oak Creek, Wauwatosa, West Allis, Brookfield, Delafield, Lake Geneva, Sheboygan, Mt. Horeb, and Madison, which have free and public skate/wheel parks, Milwaukee has none.

Prior to approaching MPS, Williams contacted residents who live within a one block radius of the park to gauge their disposition about constructing a wheel park at Sijan. She said their responses were positive.

BVNA has initiated a capital campaign to raise funding to complete this $200,000 investment.

If you would like to learn more about sponsorships or donations, contact Patty Pritchard Thompson: 

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