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The Vault: Programs from City’s TV Channel look back at quarter century of municipal history

The City of Milwaukee’s TV Channel plans to present a new broadcast series that looks back over the past 25 years on where the city was, how far it has come, and could provide the public with a glimpse on where it is going.

The Vault is a collection of previously produced City Channel features highlighting City of Milwaukee programs, services, neighborhoods and profiles dating back to the 1990s. The Vault showcases how city government works and how much it has accomplished since the features were originally created. City Channel Manager Bobby Smetana said it also offers an illuminating look into how city proposals changed or transpired over time.

“There are ventures, both public and private, that are discussed or seen only as drawings and we can see how they materialized,” Smetana said. “In one episode, city leaders discussed building a light rail system in the downtown area, and we can look back to see who supported it and who didn’t.”

The series also offers viewers a chance to honor city officials and community members who may have passed away or retired since the program first aired. Viewers may even have a personal connection to the people seen on the program, as was the case for Smetana.

“There was a program on charter schools that we were transferring into a Vault episode and I noticed a blonde-haired girl who was 2 years old and I realized that it was my daughter, who’s now a second year Veterinary school student,” Smetana said.

Smetana said that the series offers viewers a chance to see how Milwaukee has advanced, and reflect on how it can continue improving. The Vault began in early May and runs daily Monday through Friday at 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., with previously aired episodes also being uploaded on the City Channel’s YouTube Page @CityChannel25. It can also be viewed via streaming video on the City website at

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