Who's Your City?, by Richard Florida
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Archive for the ‘Wisconsin’ Category

Smaller mountain towns in either Colorado, Oregon or Montana?

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Strongly considering leaving lovely Madison, WI to return to my laid back western roots and love of mountains. I welcome anyone’s input on smaller to medium sized, affordable mountain/foothill towns in Colorado, Montana or Oregon. Some I have been exploring include Corvallis, Bend, Missoula, Kalispell, Bozeman, Fort Collins, Loveland. I just graduated with my MSW and am hoping to find a town I can a) find a decent paying job in and b) afford to live in on a Social Work salary. I am realizing this rules out many Colorado mountain towns due to extraordinary housing costs.

Ideally I am looking for a community like Madison but with close access to mountains or foothills to hike & bike in. Somewhere that is more liberal, dog & family friendly, nurtures local business (coops, mom & pops vs. national chains/mass condo development), diversity, the arts, and community (festivals, public schools, local gatherings). Does anyone have any experiences living in these areas or suggestions of other areas to check out. Thanks very much for your two cents…

Sent by Christie from Madison, WI

Not Just Beer Anymore

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Milwaukee, WI shares a similar past to many rust belt cities in Chipitts but holds a very different future. In 1999, Milwaukee’s Downtown Master Plan accounted for the Creative Class when addressing many standard issues in city planning. John Norquist, now head of the Congress for New Urbanism, was the mayor at them time. He had a vision for Milwaukee’s transformation from a post-industrial economy to an innovative based economy. We are beginning to see the benefits. Our population is increasing, there has been a surge in the art scene, two independent radio stations which feature local music now operate, we are a college town with over 70,000 students, Milwaukee is poised to become a leader in fresh water technologies and there seems to be no end in sight for my growth and opportunity.

While Milwaukee is not a major financial or tech center, it is still impressive that the city has transformed so quickly and relatively painlessly. I love the quality of life and the sense of community in Milwaukee. It is a city that celebrates its past with an eye towards the future. You can find a new best friend while listening to a umpa band in the Old German Beer Hall or have Coriander Crusted Moonfish, Cilantro Pesto Noodles, Julienne Vegetables and Orange Buerre Blanc for dinner at Coast overlooking Lake Michigan. Milwaukee is a city you can get lost in or it is a city you can get rooted in. It depends on the type of person you are. Milwaukee is in a perfect balance of old and new right now. The chic is next to the shabby. You can go to a bar and see young professionals and blue collar workers both drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon. Milwaukee is in a unique state of flux between where it was and where it is going. I am 22, a civil engineer, and an urban planner. I grew up in Milwaukee. Milwaukee will also be home. If I need to play in a larger pond Chicago is just down the road.

Sent by Jason from Milwaukee

Kenosha, Wisconsin

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

On the shores of Lake Michigan in SE Wisconsin, Kenosha is perfectly situated between Chicago and Milwaukee. A small city feel with big city amenities, Kenosha is a vibrant community of about 100k. We have miles of public shoreline, bicycle lanes, renowned museums, streetcars and walkable neighborhoods. Most exciting to artists is the recent planning of an arts-district neighborhood, KenoshaUnionParkProject(KUPP.) This desination neighborhood is focu sed on attracting diverse, creative residents. The nonprofit visual art center, Lemon Street Gallery, is leading the charge. Be careful if you come to visit…you will definately want to move here!

Sent by Melanie from Kenosha Wisconsin