Packers host Titletown District focus groups

(Photo Credit: WLUK/Ben Krumholz)

The Packers brought together dozens of people over the past two days for focus groups on its development of the Titletown District.

The focus groups concentrated on the centerpiece of the Titletown District plans: the public plaza, park area. The Packers say that area is basically a blank slate and want to know what to include to attract a wide variety of people.

People representing the arts, tourism, young professionals, and elected officials were among the 90 people the Packers invited for the focus groups.

"If this space doesn't reflect Green Bay, doesn't reflect the community, then folks won't feel its authentic, and wont' want to come to this space," said George Roberts of Biederman Redevelopment Ventures.

The Packers hired Biederman Redevelopment Ventures to lead eight focus groups. Biederman started each session with sharing ideas from public parks it developed in other places like Pittsburgh and Buffalo. The presentation led to open discussion among the invited guests.

"I think it's really thoughtful forward thinking to hear from folks in the community who have thoughts on how the space could be utilized," said Melinda Morella, the assistant director of LIVE 54218.

People shared what they'd like to see for amenities, events, regular programming, and beyond. Ideas ranged from bocce ball to board games, sledding, yoga, and even curling lessons.

"You have a lot of diverse ideas and great contributors in the room, but surprisingly they all have a very similar vision of what they want our community to be and it's a place that's warm and welcoming, inviting not only to local residents, but tourists as well," said Brian Johnson, program manager for Current Young Professionals Network.

"We got so many great ideas that are popular in the community, that the community has been missing, that happen elsewhere that could also happen here," said Roberts.

"Now the hard work is up to them to crunch all this information and work with our design team and really set forth where we want to take the design of the plaza," said Aaron Popkey, a spokesperson for the Packers.

The focus groups did not touch on what businesses people would like to see in the district, west of Lambeau Field. The team already announced Hinterland Brewery, a Kohler hotel, and a Bellin Health sports medicine facility will anchor the area.

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