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Madison, WI

Madison is the state capital and second-largest city in Wisconsin. The population of the city is roughly 223,000 people. In 2008, Money magazine named the scenic, family-friendly city as one of the top 100 places to live in the country. Madison is home to the University of Wisconsin and is consistently ranked among the best college towns and sports cities in America.

Madison is located in south-central Wisconsin in the center of Dane County, 77 miles west of Milwaukee and 122 miles northwest of Chicago. The city is sometimes described as "The City of Four Lakes", comprising the four successive lakes of the Yahara River: Lake Mendota, Lake Monona, Lake Waubesa and Lake Kegonsa, although Waubesa and Kegonsa are not actually in Madison, but just south of it.

Madison has a temperate climate, with large seasonal temperature variances. Winters see temperatures well below freezing, with moderate to occasionally very heavy snowfall. Summer temperatures often reach the upper 80s to 90s with very high humidity.


Notable Madison neighborhoods include:


Commuters are easily able to traverse the city. Three interstates service the Madison area: Interstates 39, 90, and 94, and all three intersect in downtown Madison. Interstates 39 and 90 converge at the Wisconsin-Illinois border, where they merge into a single roadway that runs north and south through Wisconsin. Interstate 94 comes from Milwaukee and ends in downtown Madison.

Numerous U.S. routes take commuters in and out of Madison. U.S. Route 12 travels the west side of Madison, routes 14 and 18 provide access to the southern part, route 51 covers the southeastern area, and route 151 travels from the northeast.

Two other areas of transportation include Madison Metro, which operates the bus system in the city, providing numerous stops around Madison and its surrounding areas. The other is the Dane County Regional Airport, which is near the north edge of the city and has more than 100 daily commercial flights.


Health care is an important industry in Madison, and the area has three hospitals:


The city's attractions include a zoo, gardens, and the Capitol building:


Visitors and residents can find many artistic and cultural venues scattered throughout the city:



University of Wisconsin-Madison finds its home in the capital city. Its 933-acre main campus sits along University Bay off eastern Lake Mendota. Its athletic teams participate in the NCAA Division I Big Ten Conference and have won 28 national championships.

Although mainly known for the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, Madison has other colleges within its city limits:


Madison has been recognized time and again as a "green city," meaning that it has implemented numerous laws and programs designed to promote clean environmental standards within the community.

The city has received the following accolades:

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