Historic & Cultural Resources

In consultation with Public Health Madison and Dane County, the Mayor has closed most City of Madison offices to public visitors in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the community. Planning employees are continuing to support critical public services remotely and are responding to emails and voicemails.  For general planning assistance, please email planning@cityofmadison.com or call 266-4635. A date has not been set to reopen offices to public visitors, but Public Health continues to closely monitor the conditions in our community.  Thank you for your understanding as we all work to keep Madison safe and healthy.

The City of Madison is rich with historic and cultural resources that are integral to the City's high quality of life. Protection and management of these resources must be considered as they exist in a modern and changing world. In Madison, there are numerous public and private organizations whose purpose is to preserve and enhance these important resources. The City of Madison's historic and cultural resources are looked after by the Historic Preservation Planning and Madison Arts sections of the Planning Division.

Mansion Hill DistrictHistoric Preservation Planning
There are five locally designated historic districts, numerous National Register Districts (excluding the UW-Madison campus), and 182 designated historic landmarks throughout the City. Such assets are defining characteristics of some neighborhoods, and great influences in others. The City is working to preserve and enhance these historic and cultural resources through its Landmarks Commission, which is charged with preserving Madison's architectural heritage.

Art in front of Monona TerraceMadison Arts
Visual, performing, and literary arts are also integral to the character of the community and are expressed through public art and the many diverse venues located throughout the community. Madison Arts works to promote this aspect of the community especially through the pursuit of public art opportunities.
Image Seed Pod (Blink 2013) by Brenda Baker, photo Eric Baillies.

Last Updated: 12/21/2020