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Looking to locate your business in a community on the fringe of large cities such as Madison, Milwaukee, & Chicago? Studies show that many individuals prefer "micropolitan" areas or small towns on the fringe of larger cities. Whitewater is conveniently located just 50 miles from Madison and Milwaukee and 80 miles from Chicago.

In addition to a skilled workforce and the necessary infrastructure, Whitewater provides several business incentives:

  • Below-average costs for labor and utilities

  • One of the lowest tax rates of all Wisconsin cities

  • Higher Education Resources through the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater

For businesses seeking an ideal location, Whitewater has been referred to as the “Center of Opportunity.” Whitewater provides geographic advantages, economic resources, University relationships, and quality of life.

There are excellent public schools, a historic downtown and a growing retail environment, a variety of community organizations and events, and countless recreational opportunities. Whitewater is an Ice Age Trail community, located within the Southern Kettle Moraine Forest Unit. The Ice Age Trails offer scenic biking, hiking, horse-back riding, skiing, and snowmobile trails. The surrounding lakes also provide ample boating, fishing, and swimming opportunities.

Key Industries

Under current zoning, the “Certified in Wisconsin” permitted uses for the Certified Ready Site include:

Technology-Related Production or Processing

Research & Development

Business Offices

Pilot Plants or Telecommunication Centers


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The Whitewater Technology Park is part of the broader Whitewater Business Park. As one of the largest office and industrial developments in southeastern Wisconsin, the Whitewater Business Park covers 540 acres, with the ability to expand to nearly 1,000 acres. There are over 20 businesses in the park, employing more than 2,300 people.


Whitewater is approximately 50 miles from Madison and Milwaukee and just 80 miles from Chicago.

  • Whitewater is served by 32 airports within 50 miles. The Dane County Airport is 47 miles and the Milwaukee Mitchell Airport is 50 miles away.

  • Freight rail is available in the community.

  • Interstates can be accessed 11 miles away. Interstates 43, 90, and 94 are located just minutes from US Highway 12 and State Highway 59 and 89 (View Zoom Prospector Infographic).

Land & Utilities

The Whitewater Business Park offers development sites from 1/2 acre to over 20 acres. Most sites are ready-to-build with infrastructure in place. A high quality environment is assured through convenants for landscaping, signage, off-street parking, and screened outside storage.

The Whitewater Business Park Infrastructure includes:

  • Minimum 38-foot roadways with 18 inch base, curb and storm sewer

  • Sanitary sewers sized from 12 to 24 inches, and a treatment plant with more than 2 million gpd in unused capacity

  • Water mains from 12 to 16 inches, often looped, and 5 million gpd in excess pumping capacity

  • Electrical power supply up to 138 kV

  • Natural gas supplied by a major pipeline bordering the park

  • Advanced telecommunications on multiple SONET rings

Green space is located throughout the park. The Moraine View Park is located near the Whitewater University Technology Park and offers 50 acres of recreational space that includes picnic facilities, soccer fields, trails, ponds, and bike trails.



Whitewater is primarily located in Walworth County, but is also part of Jefferson County and near Rock County. Together, Walworth, Jefferson, and Rock Counties are commonly referred to as the “Tri-County Area.” Whitewater’s leading industries revolve around education, wholesale, health care and social services, and manufacturing.

Profile Whitewater Tri-County Area
Population 14,929 351,976
Population Between Ages 18-65 77.9% of population 61.8% of population
Gender 51.3% Male
48.7% Female
49.73% Male
50.27% Female
High School Graduate or Higher 90.0% of individuals 25+ 90.87% of individuals 25+
Bachelor Degree or Higher 34.8% of individuals 25+ 24.6% of individuals 25+
Median Household Income $31,827 $57,009
Housing 33.5% Home Owners
66.5% Renters
68.9% Home Owners
31.07% Renters

Data provided by the United States Census Bureau and based on population estimates from July 1, 2018.


Profile Whitewater Tri-County Area
Labor Force 8,620 188,517
Total Employees 6,107 163,104
Work Distribution 39% Blue Collar
60% White Collar
45% Blue Collar
55% White Collar
Total Est. 465 14,239

Data provided by Zoom Prospector through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation

Manufacturing is a leading industry alongside higher education: Whitewater offers a labor force of 8,620 people and the top jobs by occupation include:

  • 13.25% Office and Administrative support

  • 12.56% Education, Training, & Library

  • 9.97% Production Workers

  • 9.15% Sales

  • 8.99% Executive, Managers, & Administrators

For more information, view the following:

Home to Wisconsin's largest AACSB-accredited business school.

Photo Credit: Craig Schreiner, UW-Whitewater

Photo Credit: Craig Schreiner, UW-Whitewater

Whitewater is home to the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater, who currently enrolls more than 12,000 students in 47 undergraduate majors and 13 graduate programs. Whitewater is best known for its AACSB-accredited business school, but also offers world-class programs in science, technology, education, communications, humanities, and fine and applied arts (Learn More About UW-Whitewater). There is a consistent supply of educated, eager graduates!

The University of Wisconsin - Whitewater aims to inspire, engage, and transform lives. The campus is recognized for its diversity and inclusion initiatives. The entire campus is wheelchair accessible. Every year, the friendly campus embraces more than 200 international students from more than 40 countries. Many students choose Whitewater for its award-winning educational programs as well as their award-winning undergraduate research program.

Not only is Whitewater home to the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater, but there are also 22 colleges within 50 miles who offer Associate Degree’s or Certificates and another 56 universities within 50 miles. There are plentiful avenues for continuous education near Whitewater and surrounding areas.

Opportunity Zone

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) established Opportunity Zones to incite private investment in designated economically-challenged communities.

There are 120 designed Opportunity Zones throughout Wisconsin, covering more than 40 counties. Even though Whitewater straddles the Jefferson and Walworth county border, the Opportunity Zone is located entirely on the Walworth County side. The Whitewater Business Park and Whitewater University Technology Park lies within the Opportunity Zone.

Private investment in Opportunity Zones is encouraged through tax incentives.

  1. Investors can defer tax on any prior gains invested in a Qualified Opportunity Fund (QOF) until the earlier of the date on which the investment in a QOF is sold or exchanged, or until December 31, 2026. If the QOF investment is held for longer than 5 years, there is a 10% exclusion of the deferred gain. If held for more than 7 years, the 10% becomes 15% .

  2. If the investor holds the investment in the Opportunity Fund for at least 10 years, the investor is eligible for an increase in basis of the QOF investment equal to its fair market value on the date that the QOF investment is sold or exchanged. (Source: IRS Opportunity Zones FAQ)

Click the image to view larger map

Click the image to view larger map

Whitewater Community Development Authority

city of whitewater building.jpg

As the economic development organization for the City of Whitewater, the Whitewater Community Development Authority (CDA) “exists to encourage and help people and businesses to invest in the city, creating jobs, increasing the tax base and improving the community's quality of life.” The CDA works to recruit and retain businesses and create employment opportunities by using a variety of strategies, incentives and assistance.

The CDA’s financial assistance includes:

  • Grants for qualifying startup businesses.

  • Industrial Development Loans for manufacturing businesses.

  • Commercial Enterprise Loans for retail and service businesses.

  • Micro-Loan Program has a maximum loan amount of $15,000.

  • Façade Loan Program for exterior improvements to commercial buildings.

  • Tax Increment Financing (TIF) for development in designated districts in the city.

  • A no interest housing repair and rehabilitation loan program.

Contact Information

Cameron Clapper
City Manager
Phone: 262-473-0104