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    Housing Overview at UW-Madison

    💰On average, rent for apartments near UW-Madison is $1,533/mo. UW-Madison rent is cheaper than the national monthly average of $1,554/mo.

    🚲 We currently offer 116 apartments within walking distance of University of Wisconsin's campus. In total, there are 256 student housing options available near UW-Madison.

    🎓When students are not living off-campus, they can choose between any of UW-Madison's 19 on-campus dorms. The most popular dorms at University of Wisconsin are Adams, Barnard, Bradley.

    University of Wisconsin Off-Campus Housing Guide

    The city of Madison features many historic and contemporary finds alongside its well-regarded university, the University of Wisconsin – Madison (UW-Madison). Not far from campus is the State Capitol building, which is surrounded by museums, local businesses, and the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Monona Terrace. From student bars to lakeside views, the city has something to offer all its residents.


    UW-Madison campus is located on an isthmus between lakes Mendota and Monona. There are numerous options for housing in the neighborhoods surrounding this area. From older houses to newly built apartment complexes for students, there are a variety of options to choose from.

    Downtown (also called Capitol) is a popular place for students to live in Madison. It is nearby to the university but also close to the action of the downtown area. The proximity of this neighborhood makes it a great choice because of the need for many students to walk or ride bikes to campus. This is Madison’s oldest neighborhood and has a bustling arts and nightlife scene for students to enjoy as well.

    State-Langdon is another incredibly popular residential area for UW students. It is easy to find a great place for a beer or a late-night snack because this area caters mostly to students due to its proximity to campus. Additionally, this area benefits from food trucks parking nearby the Memorial Library. Because many new university and student-focused apartments are going up in this area, rent is not too expensive. Check out complexes like The Towers on State and Statesider for great options.

    Tenney-Lapham is a neighborhood that also sits near to the university. It features a mix of older 20th-century houses and new, modern apartments. Check out Factory District, Arden, and The Lyric Apartments as complex options. Residents will also find restaurants and shops on State Street close by. Tenney Park is another highlight of this area alongside the views of Lake Mendota nearby. To add to the charm of this neighborhood, people love to ice skate on this lake in the wintertime.

    Williamson Street (also known as Willy Street) is one of the trendiest and hippest neighborhoods in Madison. Many argue that the best food and shopping in the city happens in this area. There are beautiful homes in this area, and you are unlikely to find many apartments due to wanting to keep the historic feel alive. Because of its popularity, the homes here may be a little more on the expensive side.


    The city of Madison is home to several well-regarded and unique restaurants. In the city, there is an admirable representation of global cuisine — from Southern American (That BBQ Joint) to Jamaican (Jamerica) to Indonesian (Bandung) to Ethiopian (Buraka). On Williamson Street, look out for some favorites like The Robin Room, a chill cocktail bar; Macha Tea, a Japanese-influence tea house; and Forequarter, Underground Kitchen’s flagship dining room; and Salvatore’s Tomato Pies.


    Students will be happy to know that all UW–Madison students are eligible to receive a Madison Metro bus pass, which offers convenient travel on campus and throughout Madison. The bus is the best transportation option for many people living in the city because of the limited parking options.


    On-campus parking at the University of Wisconsin – Madison is extremely limited, and students are encouraged to find rental properties that include designated parking if they will be bringing a car. To park on campus, students must apply for a parking permit or pass. These rounds of applications happen before the semester begins and require planning for the future. Many parking permits are reserved for employees of the university and parking permits such as the base lot permit do not frequently go to students. Many students opt for the flex permit option where you only pay on the days you park at the university. Students may be able to find parking in residential areas near the university. If your rental property does not provide parking spaces, consider some options such as speaking to property owners in the downtown/campus area who offer parking spaces for rent. Additionally, the city of Madison offers a Residential Parking Permit for a small fee to be able to park on the street. Be mindful that this only applies to certain areas.


    UW-Madison is strongly committed to the safety of its students and offers a variety of resources. Students can receive WiscAlerts and Crime Warnings by phone or email to alert them of any emergency situations. SafeWalk is a free nightly service that offers escort services for students to help them get places safely. The university is also home to lit pedestrian walkways and emergency contact phone poles that connect directly to an emergency operator. The nighttime campus bus service can also help students get home safely.


    Nearby to the University of Wisconsin - Madison are several grocery options from the aptly named Badger Market, Trader Joes, and the Regent Market Co-op.

    Much of the shopping in Madison happens downtown. Some prominent spots feature A Room of One's Own Bookstore, a 6,000-square-foot new and used indie bookstore. Little Luxuries, a great place for unique gifts and accessories; and the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art; visit the gift shop inside the museum to find items for all ages. If you are looking for something more concentrated, try checking out Greenway Station or Hilldale Shopping Center.

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    UW-Madison Fun Facts*






    Students keep
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    * Calculated using freshman roommate matching survey responses on

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