A vacant building near Washington Park will be converted into an event venue


A vacant building near Washington Park is to be converted into an events venue – the latest in a series of commercial developments nearby.

Known as Denizen MKE, it would host weddings and other events in a one-story, 3,100 square foot building at 4227 W. Vliet St.

That’s according to a new filing with the Milwaukee Board of Zoning Appeals. Denizen MKE would need a special use permit from the council.

Denizen MKE is owned by Amber Bricco and Rachael Flood.

Bricco is director of events and marketing and Flood is banquet manager at a Milwaukee-area country club, according to their LinkedIn profiles.

“Denizen MKE will be an event space that will benefit the surrounding community by hosting weddings, family celebrations, holiday events and neighborhood gatherings,” according to the zoning board filing.

“We will serve newly engaged couples looking for an inclusive, accessible, and event-ready space with flexible customization options,” the filing reads.

Improvements to the building, which was built in 1933, are to include a new facade, interior furnishings and a courtyard, according to the filing.

Bricco told the Journal Sentinel that she and Flood hope Denizen MKE will be ready to host events by May 2023.

The venue must have a capacity of 148 people. The events would take place on Fridays and Saturdays.

The owners expect to organize more than 30 events per year, with an average attendance of 125 people.

People attending events in Denizen MKE would be encouraged to park on Vliet Street and Highland Boulevard – staying away from streets with more residential use, the filing said.

Additionally, Denizen MKE would encourage people to use shuttles to attend events.

Bricco and Flood live in the nearby Martin Drive neighborhood, which is part of the West Side of Milwaukee.

Other nearby developments include the planned conversion of a former cinema, 3804 W. Vliet St., into the new home of accounting firm Metz & Associates and other businesses.

The building, which now houses Color Wheel Painting LLC, will be known as MKE Business Collective.

Other more recent developments include the Triciclo Peru restaurant, which opened in 2019; Frozen empanada company Empanadas Pachamama, which is under construction, and frozen fruit confectionery maker Pete’s Pops, which opened in 2018.

Meanwhile, underutilized buildings in the Milwaukee area continue to find new life as venues for weddings and events.

Last week, the Journal Sentinel announced plans to create a venue on the first floor of a four-story office building at 804 N. Milwaukee St.

Other pending projects include plans to redevelop buildings into sites at 2202-2210 W. Clybourn St. near Marquette University and 1500 E. Park Place near Riverside Park.

Tom Daykin can be emailed to tdaykin@jrn.com and followed on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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