Promoting Assets, Reducing Crime

What is PARC?

PARC is a three-year, $1.5+million initiative of Near West Side Partners, Inc., a new non-profit organization funded through the support of five anchor institutions - Aurora Health Care, Harley-Davidson, Marquette University, MillerCoors and Potawatomi Business Development Corporation.

PARC is designed to support NWSP’s mission to revitalize and sustain the Near West Side as a thriving business and residential corridor, through collaborative efforts to promote economic development, improved housing, unified neighborhood identity and branding, and greater safety for residents and businesses.

What’s kept us busy?

The PARC team has been proactive in engaging employees, visitors and residents of the Near West Side.  

The PARC team participated in all NWSP working team meetings, the Neighborhood of Neighborhoods meeting and led the data team meeting.  

The PARC team completed a number of tasks in its first year to support the many NWSP initiatives, including:

  • Promoted the HCNI home tour – including nearly 75 anchor employees attending the event

  • Gathered annual report data

  • Conducted commercial corridor audit

  • Provided NWSP board with real estate data

  • Arranged for three Good Neighbor property inspections

  • Planned Walking Wednesdays and Movie Night

  • Created a safety alert communication tree

  • Signed a data integration contract with Syslogic

  • Continue to promote Rev-Up MKE

  • Met with Dispatch App representative

  • Participated in National Night Out Planning for August 2016

  • Gathered estimates and coordinated inspections for the Good Neighbor Designation

What challenge will PARC address?

NWSP recognizes that the Near West Side of MIlwaukee has tremendous core assets, including more than 200 employers with about 30,000 employees, and nearly 40,000 residents. It also boasts a central location with easy freeway access, major religious, health care and educational institutions as well as attractive restaurants and entertainment venues. Yet the perception is that the Near West Side has significant crime challenges that prevent it from realizing its full potential as an ideal place not only to work, but also live and play.

What is the PARC approach?

PARC is an innovative program that will create an environment in which sustainable economic development can
take root and grow in the Near West Side through a two-pronged approach that will: 1. Promote Assets to transform the perception of the neighborhood; and 2. Reduce Crime to address the reality of the neighborhood’s challenges.

How will PARC promote assets?

PARC will promote assets by providing staff support to implement the priorities established by NWSP’s Working Teams — through engagement with residents, employers, employees, students, and visitors — in the areas of improved housing, commercial development and neighborhood branding. In the process, it will change the underlying dynamics that lead to crime, improve safety and transform the perception of the Near West Side.

How will PARC reduce crime?

PARC is built around an innovative, yet proven law enforcement strategy known as community prosecution that engages directly with residents, businesses, and local organizations to address problem places and people who pose risks or who are at-risk. It builds on the success of the Washington Park Partners Byrne Grant model, which achieved a 30% reduction in crime in the first year alone - with even higher success rates on blocks where interventions occurred.

  • Community Prosecution Unit: PARC provides for a fully funded Community Prosecution Unit - led by an Assistant District Attorney and full-time community prosecution coordinator — which will work daily with the Milwaukee Police Department, key government agencies and community-based organizations to pursue intervention strategies to reduce crime, prevent domestic violence and improve the quality of life within the Near West Side.

  • Data Gathering & Analysis: Central to a sustainable effort is strong data and research. Marquette University’s Center for Peacemaking will lead efforts to coordinate PARC, and work with DataShare to gather and analyze key public health and safety data that will guide planning and evaluation of PARC initiatives.

  • Neighborhood Development: PARC supports full-time evidence builder and community organizing positions to lead neighborhood interventions that promote safety and economic development.


Questions? Concerns? Ideas?

Near West Side Partners, Inc. is more than willing to speak with you about PARC and the Near West Side.  Email us at  

Help improve the Near West Side. Tell us what you think.

Thank you to the Near West Side residents who participated in the online neighborhood experience survey. The survey is now closed. Near West Side Partners and the Marquette University Center for Peacemaking are currently assessing the data. Please stay tuned for the results!

Click here to view the results of the 2016 Near West Side Resident Survey.