“The postindustrial town is reinventing itself as an outdoorsy cultural mecca, complete with new boutique hotels, locavore restaurants and an $80 million arts complex at the meeting point of two scenic rivers.”
“This is by far the most spirited and quirky town to make our list. This small Wisconsin city boasts high-paying jobs, a great university, a low unemployment rate, and a very low cost of living.”
Eau Claire seems poised, ready for its next chapter, making significant strides … Coming here now, it feels like you’re in on the ground floor of something good, with more to come.
The Chippewa River runs through this city, with loads of trails, parks, even beaches, and a shiny waterfront downtown is rolling in locally owned shops and locally sourced eats.
...young adults are moving to or staying in Eau Claire for its affordable housing, recreational opportunities, music and arts scenes, local businesses and more.— The Cap Times
There’s easily an afternoon’s worth of browsing the city’s various shops, some of which are owned by young Eau Claire natives who left and moved back.
By all means, go to Eau Claire for the music and libations. But be sure to return for the outdoor adventure, scenery and homegrown artistry to be enjoyed.
Eau Claire is the best city in Wisconsin you haven't been to.
96% of Eau Claire residents report feeling safe in their neighborhood.
The National Citizen Survey (2016)
kids & family
90% of Eau Claire residents said the city is an excellent place to raise children.
The National Citizen Survey (2016)
$170,000 median home sale price for Eau Claire County.
Realtors Associations of WI, IL, and MN (2017)
Mean travel time to work in the city of Eau Claire.
U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (2010)
Eau Claire ranks as the 13th safest of 371 metro areas in the nation.
Crime Rate Rankings, SAGE Stats, CQ Press (2015)
What costs $1 in EC will cost $1.10 in Minneapolis and $1.30 in Chicago.
Council for Community and Economic Research (2018)
Mayo Clinic Health System
Moved from Madison, WI in 2016
Big Brothers Big Sisters
Moved from Chicago in 2012
Adam & Alicia Condit
Owners of Blue Ox Running
Moved from the Washington DC area in 2017
Mike & Amy Muehlbauer
Wells Fargo & Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Moved from Lakeville, MN in 2008
Marshfield Clinic Health System
Moved from Minneapolis, MN in 2018
Danny & Stephanie Pohnl
Charter Bank & Visit Eau Claire
Moved from St. Louis Park, MN in 2017
Toy Car Studios
Moved from Austin, TX in 2016
Dunn County Health Department
Moved from Fort Collins, CO in 2013
Moved from Lafayette, IN in 2010
Moved from Houston, TX in 2018
Mai Vue Xiong
Weld Riley, S.C.
Moved back here from Madison, WI in 2010
Moved from Chicago in 2017
Most communities have at least some good. But some places have a lot of good — and Eau Claire is one of them. Dig into the guide below for the low down on everything that makes this place so great — the events, music, recreation, neighborhoods, and more that make up a truly outstanding place to live.
An ambitious community like Eau Claire always has a plan for the next big thing. These are a few of the major projects currently in development.
The City’s Redevelopment Authority is set to select from one of four major development proposals for a block-and-a-half space in the core of downtown. Key features are likely to include a new Children’s Museum building, office space, apartments, and food/beverage outlets.
This huge partnership between UW-Eau Claire, Mayo Clinic, and the YMCA, right along the beautiful Chippewa River, is underway and will accommodate large-scale events for more than 6,000 people. It will feature 150,000 square feet of wellness, aquatics, and recreation facilities.
After securing a significant federal planning grant, Eau Claire’s transit hub concept is a seven-story mixed use building housing public buses and other transportation modes, plus shops and apartments.
The L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library, Eau Claire’s most used downtown feature, is currently fundraising for an ambitious renovation project that would nearly double the building’s square footage.
The Cannery is a major redevelopment district near downtown along the Chippewa River. Projects currently under construction include a destination brewery/event venue. But ambitious future plans include a park, apartments, and a pocket neighborhood.
UW-Eau Claire has nearly completed a major reconstruction of portions of its campus, creating a beautiful river-side pedestrian space.
Think Eau Claire is a project of the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce.
Learn more about opportunities in Eau Claire and the Chippewa Valley through the following organizations:
While Wisconsin is known for its natural beauty and abundant resources, it is perhaps best defined by the people who call it home. People with a restless drive to invent, create and achieve. Who combine passion with pride and turn ideas into industries, and whose intellectual curiosity and commitment to collaboration propel groundbreaking discoveries to meet global challenges. We know that the real motivation to push forward comes from our connections and experiences. Our traditions are more than trends — they define a way of life, In Wisconsin®.