Thursday, February 27, 2014

Stay with me here...

The Potowatamis are busy building a high rise hotel down in the Menomonee River valley. I pass it on the way to work, as I cruise along the 16th Street viaduct, a high bridge linking one valley lip to the other. What I really didn't realize was how big the hotel is, at least not until I viewed it from further west, as I was on my way to meet a friend after work and was crossing the valley on the 35th Street viaduct.

The hotel takes up a huge expanse of what used to be a clear sightline to the lake. It makes sense; it would have been oriented on the land to make the most of the possibility of over charging for lake views.

The city and the local hotel community have gone back and forth for years over how to accommodate tourists and bring in larger conventions. First, the hoteliers complained that there were no suitable venues for larger conventions. So the city built the insert-the-current-corporate-sponsor-here Center, and Miller Park was built with a dome! to keep out the elements to make it available for other events when the Brewers are not using it.

Then, naturally, the city whined that there were not enough hotel rooms available. In addition to a few smaller projects, the Iron Horse Hotel (Harley Davidson) and the Potowatami Hotel (did I mention it's adjacent to their casino in the valley?) sprang up to provide more housing.

This all leads up to the cause of my consternation this morning:

According to local reports, the mayor of Milwaukee plans to place the city in the running for hosting the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

No. Dear God, no.

The city has been under Democrat (and Socialist) control for over one hundred years. It's also in Scott Walker's state - what better way to thumb your nose at a potential 2016 Republican candidate? It's full of universities - all those liberal academics ready to fawn over the candidate and pontificate in the direction of any microphone.

The thought of all those liberals and all that media crawling over the city is bad enough. But I also happen to work downtown, not all that far from the what'-its-name Center. Thankfully, I no longer have to take the freeway past Miller Park to get home. But the traffic will be horrendous, due both to security and crowds (and the mayor's pet project - a light rail running north-south from the toney east side to downtown - won't do anything but make it worse).

If it does come down that the convention is held here, I'm sure Governor (or possibly candidate) Walker will be more than gracious. After all, it would be an opportunity to showcase the state while grabbing on to those dollars the liberals like to throw around.

Still, I'm really hoping this is just a bit of nonsense talking, or that no one in their right mind in the Democratic leadership (um...) would consider little Milwaukee for the convention.

Fingers crossed.

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