Bucks arena

Stuff Blown Up

Downtown Milwaukee’s new $524 million arena will host concerts, the Milwaukee Bucks, Marquette University men’s basketball and other entertainment. The amount of resources that go into a construction project of this size is mind-blowing! Here are a few of the necessary parts and the Wisconsin companies that made, hauled and installed them.

  • More than 1,300 stepsproduced by Midwest Stairs & Iron, Milwaukee
  • Restrooms: 18 men’s; 22 women’s; 14 all-gender; and five wellness rooms – plumbing by Hooper Corp., Madison
  • More than 9,000 light fixtures – electrical work by Staff Electric Co., Menomonee Falls
  • More than 6,000 receptacles and devices
  • More than 600,000 linear feet of conduit
  • More than 3 million linear feet of wire
  • More than 1,000 plumbing fixtures produced by Kohler Co., Kohler; and Zurn, Milwaukee
  • More than 150,000 bricks (300 pallets and 15 truckloads) – installed by Arteaga Construction Inc., Milwaukee
  • 89,417 structural bolts
  • 17,500 seats
  • More than 8,000 tons (16 million pounds) of structural steel
  • 9 trusses,  each 200 feet, weighing 50 to 80 tons – produced by Merrill Iron & Steel Inc. – Schofield
  • 20,000 cubic yards of concreteinstalled by M.A. Mortenson Co., Brookfield; Choice Construction Cos. Inc., Menomonee Falls; JCP Construction LLC, Milwaukee

Team: Arena

Nearly 3,700 workers worked hard to construct the new Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center. Here are some of the jobs involved, training required and average pay.


Tasks: Install and wire electrical systems; plan, diagram and repair electrical fixtures and controls.

Training: Five-year apprenticeship  |  Average hourly wage: $25.11


Tasks: Design, install and maintain pipes for water and waste; vent gas systems; repair fixtures.

Training: Five-year apprenticeship  |  Average hourly wage: $30.11


Tasks: Building site prep; frame walls and roofs, hang walls; install windows, doors and cabinetry.

Training: Four-year apprenticeship | Average hourly wage: $21.64


Tasks: Prepare and clean work sites; drill and blast site areas; lay pipe; build scaffolds; place concrete.

Training: Apprenticeship with classroom and on-the-job training | Average hourly wage: $17.95

Iron worker

Tasks: Raise, place and connect steel to form structural frameworks; install building components; weld metal.

Training: Four-year apprenticeship | Average hourly wage: $27.45


Tasks: Use power construction equipment such as graders, dozers, cranes, pumps and loaders to grade earth, put up structures and pour surface pavement.

Training: Apprenticeship  |  Average hourly wage: $25.11

Project manager

Tasks: Coordinate activities of various project contributors; make sure projects finish on time and within budget.

Training: Two-year technical training or four-year college degree | Entry level wage: $21.61


Tasks: Plan and oversee building of structures; make sure buildings are safe to use.

Training: Two-year technical training or four-year college degree | Entry level wage: $34.87


Tasks: Plan, design and oversee the construction of buildings and structures.

Training: Four-year college degree. | Entry level wage: $28.38


Tasks: Design and sketch building plans; manage resources to keep projects on time and within budget.

Training: Four-year college degree  |  Entry level wage: $25.55

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