The Square Tomorrow: Cathedral Square Friends has recognized that we both want to solve near term practical and aesthetic items in the park, but also want to dream big on more major changes that the implemented over the long term in the square.
We believe a “square” does differ from a “park” in that squares are generally more active on a regular basis, and have the design qualities to support the more frequent and active uses.
By “current initiatives” the Cathedral Square Friends has identified some relatively basic, but all important improvement that could positively affect the square, while being limited in scope and ultimately cost for the new “start-up” group. We look to demonstrate some positive changes for the square that will have immediate impact.
Cathedral Square Friends has determined on such initiative is to solve the problem of the space between the curb and the public sidewalk around the perimeter of the square. This area is one of the first parts of the square that visitors experience when arriving. Due to active use at multiple events, this area sees allot of wear, thus eroding the lawn area to dirt/mud for much of the year. The uneven surface also creates a tripping hazard for many.
In response, Cathedral Square Friends wishes to address this issue. While longer range visions for the square will be forthcoming, Cathedral Square Friends believe that addressing this area outside of the center area of the actual square will not prevent future creative ideas for the central area of the space.
At this time, Cathedral Square Friends will be pursuing options to pave this area to enhance the urban experience of the square, with potentially paver bricks, decorative concrete or other comparable techniques. While early in the exploration of these ideas, the group is keeping the options open. Details on the tree boxes, the inside perimeter of the public walk, and other conditions need to be studied.
There has been a number of past initiative to improve the Square. Most addressed the elements that make up the space and how it can be used now and into the future. Proposals have looked at the square perimeter landscape, the open space in the center, the stage and its location, ideas on returning a fountain to the square, memorials to the historical aspects of the square, facilities such as restrooms and other functional needs.
Cathedral Square Friends want to carefully look at how the square is used today and develop a clear program moving forward. In this process, we look to have an inclusive approach to ensure many voices and perspectives are included in the planning. The Long Term Visioning will look to create a space with improved functionality with a design aesthetic fitting is important location in Milwaukee’s downtown