VISIT Milwaukee, Milwaukee Downtown, and City of Milwaukee announce improved wayfinding signage


MILWAUKEE (May 6, 2020) – VISIT Milwaukee, in collaboration with Milwaukee Downtown, Business Improvement District (BID) #21 and the City of Milwaukee, announced today that improved wayfinding signage has been installed in the heart of downtown. The signage will enhance the downtown experience for locals and for visitors traveling here for events like the Democratic National Convention, USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships, and Ryder Cup. 

The new signage, which consists of 20 vehicular signs and over 40 pedestrian signs, replaces existing signage installed in 2002 by the City of Milwaukee. The new signs are part of a larger plan to improve wayfinding signage around the city; other projects include CityPost digital kiosks and the VISIT Milwaukee maps incorporated in each Bublr Bike docking station.

“Part of what has attracted major events to Milwaukee is our compact, walkable downtown and how easy it is to navigate the city,” said Peggy Williams-Smith, president and CEO of VISIT Milwaukee. “These signs improve visitor and local experience in a logical way. This means the overall visitor experience improves, and that ultimately benefits our destination’s tourism economy.” 

After an extensive RFP process, Corbin Design was selected to design the signs after submitting a bid that delivered on quality, experience and affordability. As wayfinding signage experts, Corbin Design has completed similar projects here, as well as in Atlanta, Ga., Raleigh, NC, Indianapolis, Oklahoma City, and Los Angeles. Milwaukee-based Poblocki Sign Company fabricated and installed the signs.

Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 will continue to serve as the project manager for the signs. 

 “Our new wayfinding system will enhance walkability, while strengthening key vehicular and pedestrian connections between Wisconsin Avenue and major attractions,” says Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 CEO Beth Weirick. “We’ve also expanded the system to include new pedestrian signage, creating a more dynamic and cohesive first-time visitor experience and design aesthetic.”  

“Thanks to the collaborative spirit of VISIT Milwaukee and Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21, the new wayfinding signage will complement new CityPost interactive kiosks being installed by the City of Milwaukee later this spring,” said Jeff Polenske, commissioner of public works for the City of Milwaukee. “The design will carry through to other applications across the City of Milwaukee for a more comprehensive wayfinding and information experience.” 

Facts about the new signage:

  • Each sign lists three attractions that experience high visitor density
  • All signs have been installed on existing sign poles and infrastructure 
  • Thanks to their clever module design, the signs are easil y adaptable to accommodate business name changes
  • The new sign design incorporates elements like exposed rivets that are intended to reflect Milwaukee’s reputation as a manufacturing hub
  • Other design elements draw on inspiration from the city itself, like the Hoan Bridge truss and a beer keg shape
  • The red letters spelling Milwaukee are meant to mirror other marquee signs found in the area
  • The 2002 signs all include “Downtown Milwaukee” at the bottom of each sign; the new design lists only “Milwaukee” so that other neighborhoods can incorporate the unifying design
  • Over 40 new pedestrian signs have been installed throughout downtown, which includes walk-times to nearby attractions and eight existing information kiosks on Wisconsin Avenue

Downloadable images of the signs can be found here

About VISIT Milwaukee
VISIT Milwaukee is the Greater Milwaukee area’s convention and visitors bureau, marketing the destination as a top choice for business, convention, and leisure travel to national and international visitors in order to increase the economic impact of tourism in the region. Each year, tourism supports over 53,200 full-time jobs and brings more than $5.9 billion to the community. VISIT Milwaukee has over 700 members, including hotels/motels, restaurants, attractions, services, and area businesses. The Wisconsin Center District and Potawatomi Hotel & Casino are strategic partners with VISIT Milwaukee, providing funding support for conventions and tourism programs. For more information call (80 0) 554-1448 or visit

About Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21
Milwaukee Downtown, Business Improvement District #21, is an organization established in 1998 to support the interests of the downtown Milwaukee business community. Created through private sector leadership, Milwaukee Downtown is a management district organization that oversees 150 square blocks representing approximately 500property owners in the center of downtown Milwaukee. The organization funds specific initiatives aimed at creating a clean, safe and friendly downtown. More info available at