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NerdWallet considers environmental quality and green transportation trends

Mayor Soglin and other city officials today heralded another accolade for the City of Madison, this one focusing on parks and transportation, names Madison the Greenest City in the Nation.

As Earth Day 2014 fast approaches, NerdWallet, a consumer advocacy website, wanted to shed light on the places in the U.S. with the highest levels of green living. NerdWallet determined the greenest cities in the country based on the following variables:
 Median Air Quality Index
 Parks per 10,000 residents
 Gallons of excess fuel consumed per commuter
 Percentage of people who work from home, or walk, bike, carpool or take public transportation to work

NerdWallet determined that Madison is the greenest city in the nation. The city has 12.7 parks per 10,000 residents and a median Air Quality Index of 41. Madison is also home to green-minded commuters: 38% of the city’s residents either work from home, or walk, bike, carpool, or take public transit to work.

"This is another outside source confirming what we already know, that Madison is a great place to live, work, play and raise a family," said Mayor Soglin at a press conference at Reindahl Park on Madison’s Northeast side. "I would also note that along with parks and bike infrastructure, this award is representative of a highly balanced transportation system. We receive a lot of points for our low gallons of excess fuel consumed per commuter due to our relatively low congestion levels."

17th District Alder Joe Clausius, City Traffic Engineer David Dryer and Bike Coordinator Arthur Ross and Tony Fernandez with City Engineering joined Mayor Soglin. The Mayor also praised the collaborative approach the city takes while planning, not only parks but bike paths, public transportation and roads.

"Madison is a great place for people who care about green living," said NerdWallet analyst Sreekar Jasthi. "The city has the most parks per capita in the nation and offers over 200 miles of biking and hiking trails to its residents."

Some of the other greenest cities in the nation include Anchorage, Alaska; Greensboro, N.C.; and Cincinnati, Ohio. Read the full study online.
For more information about NerdWallet, visit


  • Katie Crawley, 608-266-4611