MilWALKee Walks is a pedestrian advocacy group that aims to make walking and rolling safe, accessible, and fun for all Milwaukeeans. We are dedicated to promoting walking and pedestrian infrastructure in Milwaukee, educating Milwaukeeans and local policymakers concerning the rights and needs of pedestrians of all abilities, and fostering the development of safe and vibrant environments for all pedestrians.
You can learn even more about MilWALKee Walks on our program website.
Walk Culture Ambassadors, staff, and other volunteers lead crosswalk actions. Crosswalk actions are hosted at events with high foot traffic and in neighborhoods near the Pedestrian High Injury Network. Volunteers at crosswalk actions help to educate drivers about the pedestrian right of way at marked and unmarked crosswalks, and help pedestrians feel more comfortable in crossing the street. On many Milwaukee streets, drivers rarely yield to pedestrians. Crosswalk actions help to build community while educating all road users about the the law.
Interested in hosting a crosswalk action or joining us for our next event? Contact us.
Placemaking and Tactical Urbanism
Shortening the distance of crosswalks, creating green spaces next to sidewalks and bike lanes, and adding artwork and seating all help to create pedestrian-friendly environments. MKE Walks educates residents about city programs (such as Paint the Pavement and Active Streets) and about the impact of street infrastructure on reducing reckless driving. Our mobile parklet project was a key placemaking project. On Milwaukee’s southside, Muskego Way Forward used the parklet to activate a vacant lot, support local art, and to close a slip lane – what we believe is the first closed slip lane in the City.
Do you live in a neighborhood that does not feel safe to walk? Have you begun to think about why? We can help you create a group of stakeholders such as city staff, Alders, public schools representatives, business owners, neighborhood residents, and others who you might think are relevant stakeholders. Creating this group of concerned people can lead to ideas for improvement.
Walking in Context and Walk Audits
Neighborhood walks can be created for a variety of purposes. Walks can focus on historical buildings, places of interest, socialization, and fitness or an opportunity to look at community assets and problematic areas. With some initial preparation, community walks can be created to improve conditions and make it more likely that more people will be willing to walk.
Similarly, we can conduct walk audits with your or your organization. Walk audits can help educate participants about infrastructure, and how to report issues, as well as to build community to advocate for larger changes in your neighborhood.
Milwaukee has is lucky to have many organizations and dedicated advocates who are working to making the city safer for those walking and biking. Here are some of the organizations we frequently collaborate with.
Our work would not be possible without partnerships with many community organizations throughout the city, such as the Sherman Park Community Association, VIA CDC, Amani United, Muskego Way Forward, AARP WI, the Dominican Center for Women, Jane’s Walk, the Coalition for Safe Driving, the Milwaukee County Trail Council, and many more.
Business Improvement Districts (BIDs)
BIDs are natural partners in efforts to make streets safer for pedestrians. Frequent foot traffic helps to boost economic vitality and provide “eyes on the street” for safety. MKE Walks has hosted crosswalk actions in collaboration with BIDs. In 2022, we secured funding for a local artist to build a mobile parklet, in collaboration with several Milwaukee BIDs. The mobile parklet supported the activation of curb lanes in areas of the city where businesses have fewer resources to design and build their own outdoor seating.
Milwaukee Safe & Healthy Streets
Milwaukee Safe & Healthy Streets is a local active transportation alliance. Safe & Healthy Streets means prioritizing people, providing education and empowerment in the pursuit of better walking, bicycling, and safer streets for all Milwaukeeans. Together MilWALKee Walks & Milwaukee Safe & Healthy Streets collaborate to provide opportunities and resources for the general public in order to increase active mobility safety hand public health.
Milwaukee County and the City of Milwaukee
Various City and County departments, including the Department of Public Works and the Milwaukee Police Department, play a key role in our efforts around educating the community around traffic calming infrastructure, supporting our placemaking efforts, and joining us for safety walks and crosswalk actions.
We train and mobilize residents to advocate for safe, comfortable walking environments in neighborhoods across Milwaukee.
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