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Madison is ranked as the 2nd for pedestrian safety among the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the country, according to a report recently released by Smart Growth America and National Complete Streets Coalition. Wisconsin is ranked as the 15th among the 50 states and District of Columbia.

The report ranks states and metropolitan areas around the country in pedestrian safety using "Pedestrian Danger Index", or PDI. The index is calculated by a formula based on the number of people who live in that state or metro area, the share of people who walk to work and the number of pedestrian fatalities.

Madison’s high ranking is a result of sound policy, planning, engineering, education, enforcement and other factors. The City adopted a Complete Street policy, which considers all road users in the roadway design process, including pedestrians, bicycles, handicapped users, transit, freight operations and other motor vehicles. In addition to providing conventional accommodations such as accessible sidewalks, curb ramps and bump-outs, the City is innovating to introduce new treatments to improve pedestrian safety such as high visibility crosswalks, rectangular rapid flashing beacons and audible signals for vision impaired pedestrians. The City also has a traffic enforcement and safety team, which provides education and enforcement on traffic safety.

The City has built a robust multimodal transportation network. It has been ranked as one of the most walkable communities in the Midwest and one of the best bike cities in the country.

"These accolades for our City are not a coincidence," said Mayor Paul Soglin. "This is the result of careful planning, outreach and collaboration with residents and staff. I am delighted that our work is paying off, but we have more to do. We are aiming for Number One!"

The City continues to look for ways to improve transportation safety, and will not stop till we reach and maintain zero traffic fatality.


  • Katie Crawley, 608-266-4611