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Green and growing in Wisconsin Madison-Middleton Metropolitan

Wisconsin’s capital city is also home to the Madison campus of the University of Wisconsin with its more than 28,000 undergraduates.

Earlier this year Madison was rated as one of the nation’s top 10 metros for income growth by Bizjournals, the online media division of American City Business Journals, a publisher of metropolitan business newspapers. Bizjournals editors cited an emerging biotechnology sector as a key to the area’s economic growth, where per capita income has risen 160% since 1985.

In June, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance newsletter named Madison as one of the 10 best cities for Empty Nesters, citing its many amenities, including the arts, ethnic restaurants, pubs and shopping that are attracting folks “ready to trade in the suburbs for easy urban living.”

Built on an isthmus between lakes Monona and Mendota, the city is well-known for its beautiful scenery. A total of five area lakes and more than 260 city parks create settings for a variety of year-round outdoor activities, ranging from hiking, biking, swimming and sailing to cross-country skiing, snow sailing and ice fishing.

Long known for being “green,” Madison has received several awards this year alone:

  • One of the Top 10 Best Outdoor-Oriented Towns, Yahoo! Real Estate, Fall 2007

  • Dane County Regional Airport awarded a Wisconsin Sustainability & Energy Efficiency Leadership Award, September 2007

  • Dane County Regional Airport received Environmental Achievement Award, Airports Council International - North America (ACI-NA), August 2007

  • Dane County Farmers Market named Best in Nation, Eating Well, August 2007

  • Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center awarded a Silver Certification under the LEED program for existing buildings, August 2007

  • One of the Top 10 Greenest Cities, Yahoo! Real Estate, May 2007

  • Ranked No. 1 Walking City, Prevention, April 2007

  • One of the Top 25 Best Places to Live, Country Home, April 2007

  • One of the Top 10 Best Green Large Cities, Country Living, April 2007

2006 2011 CHANGE
Total population 542,632 578,037 6.5%
Median age 33.7 34.1
Average household size 2.30 2.25


2006 2011 Change
Deck/patio/pool furniture $6.27 $8.18 30.4%
BBQ grills $6.16 $7.84 27.2%


2006 2011 Change
Total housing units 237,742 258,250 8.6%
Number owner occupied 139,399 150,360 7.9%
Median value of owner households 143,648 143,629 -0.01%
Median rent $611 $610 -0.2%


2006 2011 Change
Hispanics may be of any race
White 208,308 223,066 7.1%
African-American 6,754 8,418 24.6%
Asian-American 6,704 8,496 26.7%
Other 6,351 8,522 34.2%
Hispanic 5,925 7,611 28.5%
White, Non-Hispanic 195,526 205,556 5.1%


2006 2011 Change
Median $54,960 $69,980 27.3%
Under $25,000 43,858 35,218 -19.7%
$25,000 to $34,999 23,904 19,996 -16.3%
$35,000 to $49,999 36,049 30,211 -16.2%
$50,000 to $74,999 51,653 48,580 -5.9%
$75,000 or more 72,653 114,497 57.6%


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