There Will be 100 Square Blocks of the DNC Hassle Zone

It may not be the formal perimeter, but it is where you’re going to see road closures and extra security during Milwaukee’s busiest week.

The Milwaukee Police Department just released the planned security zone for the Democratic National Convention (July 13-16). The zone will run from Cherry Street to Clybourn Street and 10th Street to Water Street.

This square of downtown Milwaukee encompasses The Public Museum, the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, Froedtert Hospital and obviously Fiserv Forum, where the main convention is taking place. Visit Milwaukee’s map is a helpful guide to the zone. Security starts the weekend before the DNC rolls into town on the 11th and 12th, and ends right when the convention does on the 16th.

It’s important to note that this security zone is not the official perimeter, where security checks will take place and you will need all-important credentials to join the party. The formal perimeter will be announced on a later date. What police released today was what they called a “security footprint,” which mostly means there will be heightened security in the area.  

None of the businesses within the boundary of the footprint will be asked to close. If you work there, you’ll be able to get into your office (apologies to anyone hoping for a DNC vacation). And, of course, if you live there, you’ll still be able to get home. We’re not being cut off from the buzz and activity of the convention, so if you’re looking forward to hanging around, getting lunch and soaking in the politically-charged atmosphere, there are still plentiful opportunities to do so.

But there are still some announcements left to look out for — specifically road closures. When the convention arrives, roads within the zone are going to close and traffic will be affected — you might be sitting there awhile. And access into the heart of DNC action will obviously have restrictions in place, for those of you who were hoping to high-five Elizabeth Warren or tell Mayor Pete about the genius 20-point plan to save America you’ve been cooking up in your basement.

Other than that, the security zone is far from shut down. There will be plentiful activity, businesses will be open and likely thriving, and your life won’t be put on hold.

All right, that’s it. Take a deep breath — it’s going to be a wild week.



Archer is the managing editor at Milwaukee Magazine. Some say he is a great warrior and prophet, a man of boundless sight in a world gone blind, a denizen of truth and goodness, a beacon of hope shining bright in this dark world. Others say he smells like cheese.