Milwaukee Health Department Coronavirus COVID-19 updates. Visit Impact 211 website for information or call 2-1-1 for assistance.






Department of Public Works            




Jeffery S. Polenske, P.E. 
Commissioner of Public Works

For Immediate Release       

July 9, 2020                                                                     

Water Street Mural to be Removed Friday

Serious traffic safety concerns have come to light as a result of the painted protest message on North Water Street:

The street mural takes up an entire block of the southbound lanes of Water Street and the display covers the street’s traffic control pavement markings. Pavement markings provide guidance and information to motorists and are essential for a safe flow of traffic.

It has also been observed that the paint is very slick when wet and we have observed vehicles having difficulty breaking and stopping when approaching the Wells Street traffic signal. We have observed and/or received complaints that the mural paint surface is problematic for vehicles ranging from bicycles and motorcycles to buses when it rains.

Due to these concerns, the City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works (DPW) is scheduled to remove the mural on N. Water Street between E. Wells Street and E. Kilbourn Avenue on Friday, July 10.

“The message painted on Water Street has been heard loud and clear by policy makers in city government, and the Department of Public Works has no intention to diminish the voices calling for change,” said Commissioner of Public Works Jeff Polenske. “Our concern for unauthorized street art including the current mural on Water Street is solely about safety.”



841 N. Broadway, Room 501 • Milwaukee, WI 53202 •

This site is powered by the Northwoods Titan Content Management System