Doing Business Downtown
Resources for your business located in Madison's Central Business Improvement District (BID).
- Wondering what a BID is? Check this FAQ
- We've complied this list of City of Madison Helpful Links.
- Use this Link to Pedestrian Counter Data for planning and scheduling.
- Sign your business up for the Downtown Madison Gift Certificate Program.
Full Business Directory
Review the entire list of businesses located within Madison's Central BID. Explore the full business directory.
Bring Your Business Downtown
Bring your business downtown.
Downtown Madison offers a thriving market for your retail, restaurant, entertainment or service business, in a top-ranked place to live, work and prosper.
A Safe Place
Downtown Madison is a vibrant, safe community with low crime and active, engaged neighborhood police officers.
- [Link to Downtown Business Watch]
A Scenic Place
Set on an isthmus between two scenic lakes, Madison's Central Business District encompasses the heart of downtown Madison, where the famed State Street pedestrian mall links the Capitol square, seat of Wisconsin state government, to the University of Wisconsin campus.
A Thriving Place
The central downtown is home to more than 1,500 businesses – from shops, boutiques, and restaurants to financial, law and communications firms – plus museums and cultural destinations. The Business Improvement District includes more than 350 shops, galleries, restaurants, night spots, and entertainment and service businesses, from national brands to locally owned.
A Place to Live
The central downtown serves a thriving residential market, with 1,300 area condo units and 1,800 rental units added since 1995, as well as the University of Wisconsin campus with 42,000 students and 18,000 faculty and staff.
A Proud Place
Recent Madison accolades include:
- One of the Best Places to Live , livability.com, 2019
- One of the Best Cities for Pedestrian Safety , Smart Growth America, 2019
- One of the Best Capital Cities to Live In , WalletHub.com, 2019
- One of the Best Cities for an Active Lifestyle , WalletHub.com, 2019
- Best City for Renters , SmartAsset.com, 2018
- Best City for Quality of Life and Industry Diversity , Business Facilities Magzine, 2018
- One of the Top US Metros for Millenials , ApartmentList.com, 2018
- One of the Best Cities for Millenial Families , ValuePenguin.com, 2018
- One of the Top Cities Where Women Are the Most Successful , SmartAsset.com, 2018
- Ranked the Best City to Raise a Family , Zumper.com, 2018
- One of the Best Places For Bikes , peopleforbikes.org, 2018
- Top ranked Surprisingly Bike Friendly City , livability.com, 2018
- One of the Best Cities for Runners , SmartAsset.com, 2018
- One of the Most Walkable Cities , expedia.com, 2018
- One of the Best Cities for Recent College Grads , livability.com 2018
- Best City to Live in if You're Young and Broke , MagnifyMoney.com, 2018
- One of the Best Small Cities in America , National Geographic, 2018
- One of the Best Places to Live , livability.com, 2018
- Greenest City in Wisconsin , Insurify.com, 2018
- Best Place to Live in Wisconsin , Money Magazine, 2018
- Most Educated City in Wisconsin , Insurify.com, 2018
- Top 15 Best Public Schools in the US , US News, 2018
- One of the Best Fall Foliage Trips , TripAdvisor.com, 2018
- Nicest City in America , Cheatsheet.com, 2018
- One of the Best Areas for STEM Professionals , WalletHub.com, 2018
- One of the Best Run Cities , WalletHub.com, 2018
- One of the Best Cities to Start Your New Carreer , Zippia.com, 2018, US News, 2018
- One of the Best Beer Destinations in the World , VinePair.com, 2018
- One of America's Best Small Cities , bestcities.org, 2017
- Most Caring city in America , WalletHub.com, 2017
- One of the Best places to Live In , US News and World Report, 2017
- One of the Best Cities for Public Land Park Score , Trust for Public Land, 2017
- Best College Town for Dating , DatingAdvice.com, 2017
- One of the Sportiest Cities in America , Men's Health, 2017
- Madison one of America's 9 Best College Towns , Smarter Travel, August, 2017
- Fittest City in America , FitBit, 2016
- One of the Top US Growth Cities , U-Haul, 2016
- One of the Hottest American Cities , Business Insider, 2016
- One of the Best Cities for 20 Somethings , move.org, 2016
- One of the Best Cities for Post-Graduation , Glamour, 2016
- One of the Best Cities for Parks , livability.com, 2016
- One of the Best Cities in the US for Single Moms , WalletHub.com, 2016
- One of the Best Cities For Young Professionals , Forbes.com, 2016
- One of the Top 10 Happiest Cities , National Geographic, 2015
- One of the Healthiest Cities , livability.com 2015
- One of the Top 50 swim cities , USA Swimming, 2015
- Platinum Ranked Bicycle Friendly Community , The League of American Bicyclists, 2015
- Ranked 5 Stars , yelp.com, 2015
- One of the Queerest Cities in America , The Advocate, Forbes.com, 2014
- Ranked #1 for Succesful Aging Among Big and Small Cities , Forbes.com, 2014
- Ranked the Most Livable City in America , livability.com, 2014
- One of the Best Cities for People 35 and Under , livability.com, 2014
- One of the Best Cities for Military Retirement , USAA Magazine, 2014
- One of the Best Cities for Young Professionals , Forbes.com, 2014
- One of the Best Cities for Green Commuting , homeownersinsurance.com, 2014
- Madison Maintains Superior Bond Rating , Moody's Investor Service, 2013
- Recognized as Bird City , Bird City Wisconsin Project, 2013
- Best Tasting Water in Wisconsin , Wisconsin Water Association, 2013
- One of the Top 5 Places to Live, livability.com, 2013
- Ranked among Top Healthiest Cities , Huffington Post, 2013
- Dane County Farmer's Market Rated Best in the Nation , eatingwell.com, 2007
- One of the 10 Best Weekend Family Trips, Nick Jr. Family Magazine, 2007
- Number One Walking City , Prevention, 2007
- One of America's Best Vegetarian-Friendly Small Cities, goveg.com, 2006
- One of the Brainiest Cities in the Nation, American City Business Journals, 2005
- Best Game Day Atmosphere , Sports Illustrated on Campus, 2005
A Connected Place
Located in south Central Wisconsin, Madison is just off Interstates I-90, I-94 and I-39, with easy driving access from Milwaukee (90 minutes), Chicago (2.5 hours) and Minneapolis (4.5 hours). Dane County Regional Airport offers non-stop service to many major US cities.
A Great Place to Visit
Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center, the University and downtown hotels offer top-notch meeting and convention facilities, with more than 1,200 hotel rooms within walking distance of central downtown.