From the start, it was cast as a fight for survival.

When plans for a pair of music halls in the Deer District backed by mega concert promoter Live Nation became public earlier this year, local independent concert venue operators scrambled to join forces to try to block the project. They formed a group called Save MKE’s Music Scene, warning that some treasured Milwaukee venues would almost certainly disappear from the city’s concert landscape if the $50 million proposal became a reality.