University of Wisconsin–Madison

UniverCity of Monona

UniverCity Year launched in fall 2016 with the City of Monona. The partnership is organized around four project areas that the city identified:

1. Parks and Recreation

How can we ensure Monona parks will be enjoyed by all for generations to come? Students will research and recommend improvements to the master plans for Ahuska and Winnequah parks. They will focus on increasing the usability of the parks, including improvements to lighting, pedestrian paths, sports fields, and restroom facilities. UW courses will also investigate sustainable environmental management improvements like irrigation, drainage, landscaping, shoreline restoration and turf management. (Courses)

2. Housing and Economic Development

How do we balance the need for historic preservation and stability while addressing community change and redevelopment opportunities? Students are examining the current housing climate in Monona to inform redevelopment goals and select sites for redevelopment. Focus areas include affordable housing, preservation of single-family neighborhoods, and development of mixed-use and commercial real estate to draw new families and businesses to the City of Monona. (Courses)

3. Connected Monona

How can Monona connect citizens and communicate effectively in a new era of technological innovation? Students are helping revamp the city’s digital resources for residents. Targets include researching the costs and benefits of a citywide Wi-Fi infrastructure, improving the usability of the city website, developing apps, expanding the city’s presence on social media and providing programming for the community radio station. Students are also tackling less-visible technical challenges like streamlining the city’s electronic record-keeping and filing systems. (Courses)

4. Active Transportation

How can we make transportation safer and more accessible? Students are planning improvements to Monona’s transportation infrastructure, ensuring that biking and walking routes to transit and key destinations are safe and accessible to all. They will also examine the social behaviors around active transportation, design a campaign to encourage biking and walking to schools, and assess the health benefits of increasing active transportation options. (Courses)

Here’s what people are saying about our pilot project with the City of Monona. #UniverCityOfMonona

Watch this introduction to the partnership by UniverCity Year Director, Jason Vargo, and Monona Mayor, Bob Miller.