Milwaukee Council Inches Bucks Garage Financing Forward

Members of the Milwaukee Common Council Zoning, Neighborhoods and Development Committee at a hearing on the arena project. 

Another part of the financing package for a new NBA arena in Milwaukee has moved ahead but the process was not a slam dunk.

A committee of the Milwaukee Common Council has agreed to recommend $47 million in tax incremental financing for a new parking garage and plaza near the planned arena. But first there were several hours of often heated discussion over the number of construction jobs for Milwaukee residents, naming rights for the parking structure and a committee move to halt a street closure sought by the Bucks.

Alderman Bob Bauman voted for the package but said his enthusiasm for the project has been curbed.

“You might have 10 votes today, you might have seven votes a week from now if some of this backsliding and downplaying continues,” he said.

The project needs eight votes next week when the full council will take up the issue. Bucks president Peter Feigin said the team and the city are not on the same page right now, but the Bucks plan more conversations with council members in the next few days.