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Livability declares Madison the Best Place to Live in America

High Dynamic Range (HDR) image of Madison, Wisconsin skyline and state capitol
High Dynamic Range (HDR) image of Madison, Wisconsin skyline and state capitol(NBC15)
Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 2:57 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - A new survey of small and mid-size American cities confirmed what we all knew: Madison is the best place to live. The Wisconsin capital capped off its climb to the top of the Livability.com rankings of 1,000 cities this year after taking the bronze medal last year.

The Madison Chamber of Commerce celebrated the news Tuesday, saying it just proves the city is “the place to be” as the nation recovers from the pandemic and the shift to remote work gives people more option for where to lay down roots.

“With the nation’s most sector-diverse economy, locally built companies exporting global solutions, an intentionality toward being a more just place, a wide variety of food and cultural attractions, and countless opportunities to drive positive change, this is truly the community where you can make a career, make a life and make a difference,” Chamber of Commerce President Zach Brandon said, listing the benefits the city offers.

As home to the University of Wisconsin’s flagship campus (of course), Livability noted Madison’s long-standing reputation as the one of the best college towns in America, but that’s not what earned the city the #1 spot. The marketing company described Madison as great for “recent grads and retirees alike” pointing to its “high rate of employment, a resilient economy, excel(lence) in nearly every category.”

The natural beauty surrounding Madison, highlighted by lakes Mendota and Monona, didn’t escape the judges’ eyes either. Nor did the hundreds of miles of hiking and biking trails allowing people to take it all in. Among the other places getting shout outs are:

  • For weekend plans: Olbrich Botanical Gardens
  • For feasting: Dane Co. Farmers’ Market
  • For a drink to go along with the feast: Livability combined the state’s reputation as America’s Dairyland and the place where the blender was invented to recommend Madison’s milkshakes – including the vegan on at Monty’s Blue Plate Diner.
  • Outdoorsy activity: Lake Mendota in the summer and Lakeshore Path when it’s time to bundle up.
  • Rooftop Bar: Camp Trippalinedee
  • For your four-legged friends: The Boneyard

Notably, after ranking those thousand cities and putting Madison atop the list, Livability’s rankings did not place any other Wisconsin city in the top 100.

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