Milwaukee Preservation Alliance, Inc. is a non-profit organization devoted to promoting stewardship and awareness of the historic, cultural, and economic value of Milwaukee’s built heritage. MPA aims to strengthen Milwaukee’s neighborhoods by advocating for and promoting their unique cultural spaces and architectural assets in order to foster a strong and vibrant community as well as demonstrating the link between historic preservation and viable economic development.
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Historic preservation is essential to a strong local economy. A large and growing body of research is documenting the positive impact that historic preservation has on the economy in six broad areas: local job growth, property values, increased heritage tourism, smaller environmental impact, greater quality of life, and downtown revitalization. One of MPA’s primary goals is to continue to promote historic preservation as a valuable economic tool to those in a position to make decisions concerning our historic resources: elected officials, property owners, developers, and investors. A number of Milwaukee neighborhoods and buildings have been revitalized by the conservation and restoration of their historic fabric including the Third Ward, Brady Street, and Brewer’s Hill as well as the Iron Horse Hotel, the Pabst Theater, and the Riverside Theater. Milwaukee’s character and charm lie within these areas and would be greatly diminished without them. MPA’s advocacy work makes a difference in Milwaukee but the continued loss of historic buildings demonstrates the urgent need for our organization and our work. Presently, Milwaukee Preservation Alliance is an active participant in a coalition to preserve the National Soldiers Home. In 2011, MPA orchestrated the campaign to have the National Soldiers Home recognized as one of the Nation’s 11 Most Endangered Places. In addition, MPA assisted with the Soldiers’ Home National Historic Landmark status, and is a founding member of the Soldiers Home Community Advisory Council. As Milwaukee’s only organization devoted solely to advocating for historic preservation, MPA’s task is not simply to protect the past; it is also to build public awareness, appreciation and support for the distinctive historic character of the city of Milwaukee in order to foster more livable communities.