State Street, Madison, Wisconsin, Sans Music
September 23, 2017
The street was a conventional four-lane undivided road until 1974, when a proposal was passed by the City of Madison to turn it into a pedestrian mall. Construction on that project began in late June, 1974, with an initial estimated completion budget of million. This conversion left the street as a two-lane limited-access road, with extra-wide sidewalks created on both sides of the now-narrower street. The east–west road allows only city buses, fire apparatus, police cars, bicycles, delivery vehicles, and pedestrian traffic.
Today, the street hosts a variety of shops, bars, and restaurants and is popular for its small-town appeal, street musicians, jugglers and other types of busking, making it a common tourist attraction. Like high-pedestrian-traffic streets in many cities’ downtowns, it also has a noticeable homeless, vagrant, and panhandler population. Places of interest on State Street are the Overture Center for the Arts and the Memorial Library Mall.