Some Port officials reject Coal Dock Parkway, say street name should recognize We Energies contribution
What should the road running through Coal Dock Park be called?
Port Washington aldermen debated that subject Tuesday night, but they didn’t come to a resolution before their meeting ended.
The Coal Dock Committee suggested the road should be called Coal Dock Parkway, but that recommendation didn’t sit well with all the aldermen.
“The name’s horrible,” Ald. Dave Larson said. “It’s not very imaginative. It’s not very creative.”
He didn’t like it when the city named the park Coal Dock Park, Larson added, noting it’s too similar to Kolbach Park on the city’s north side.
He suggested the city call the road Energy Way.
“I like the idea of tying energy into it,” Larson said.
But Ald. Kevin Rudser asked, “Is that because there’s a power plant there?”
The name would pay homage to the fact We Energies essentially donated the land for the park, Larson said.
Ald. Dan Becker said he liked that concept.
“I’m throwing in a plug for Energy Drive if we can’t have Becker Way,” he said jokingly. “I like the idea of Energy Drive. I thought that was fairly creative and energizing.”
City Administrator Mark Grams defended the Coal Dock Committee’s suggestion, noting that the road leading to Miller Park in Milwaukee is Miller Park Way.
“Miller Park is a cool name. Coal Dock Park isn’t,” Larson replied.
Besides, Becker said, MillerCoors paid millions of dollars in naming rights for the stadium.
Ald. Bill Driscoll said he favored the name Coal Dock Parkway.
“I think it celebrates the coal dock,” he said, “and the coal dock is part of the history of the city. It’s probably one of the things I miss the most, watching the coal boats come in and unload at the power plant.”
However, Driscoll said, the fact that the city is leasing the park property from We Energies for a minimal cost for 100 years gives credence to Larson’s proposal.
City Atty. Eric Eberhardt, who recommended the city name the roadway, noted that the city doesn’t generally name its streets. Most are named by developers when subdivisions are platted.
The city should name the road, he said, to make it easier for emergency responders and dispatchers. It could help prevent confusion, particularly if some of those responding to an emergency are from another community.
The council ended their discussion without settling on a name, but the matter won’t end there.
Eberhardt said that to comply with state statutes, the matter will likely be sent to the Plan Commission for a recommendation in July, then taken up during a public hearing before the Common Council. The council will then vote on the street name.