“I also believe that there are developers who support development focused on public transport and will seek to create housing, in the years to come, on the proposed BRT North / South line (rapid transit bus)”, Rhodes said.
“The island of underdevelopment”
North Side residents consistently use one word to describe the area: “island.”
But instead of water, the North Side is isolated by a lack of public transportation and economic development.
For Figueroa, the area’s vast public spaces, like Warner Park and Cherokee Marsh, are often underutilized because people without a vehicle cannot easily reach them. The limited options for shopping can be difficult for some to access, and she thinks twice before sending her own children on a bus to the northern transfer point, which is poorly lit at night.
âI always hope that something will change, that we are really going to inject into the North Side of economic development and activities that kids can get involved in,â she said.
When it comes to commerce, shopping is mostly limited to the North Side Town Center, which is home to Willy Street Co-op North, Goodwill, a few restaurants, a municipal library branch, and a dollar store.
“The North Side is an island, and it is an island of underdevelopment,” said Armando Ibarra, professor at UW-Madison and former North Side resident who has studied working-class Latin American communities. .