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Business

Early in its history, Portage flourished as a trade center and retail hub of Wisconsin. Today, the business sense of the early days is still alive. Ideally situated along Interstates 90/94 and 39, just outside of Madison and within a few hours of busy markets in Milwaukee, Chicago and the Twin Cities, Portage is a flourishing and progressive city that welcomes new businesses and continues to draw in business and industry, while simultaneously retaining its established commerce base.

The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce, the Columbia County Economic Development Corporation, and the city, through a newly created Director of Business Development and Planning position, continue to support and facilitate economic development initiatives by providing leadership and direction.

Economic Development

Portage has a diversified base of employers featuring a unique mix of small, family owned shops and large national firms. Divine Savior Healthcare is one of Portage’s largest employers, and various manufacturers and food processors make up a large portion of the local economy as well. Companies such as PendaForm Corp. (manufacturer of truck accessories), AMPI (natural and processed cheese packaging plant) and Cardinal FG (manufacturer of glass) have made a home here. Education and government also have a significant presence, as does the Columbia Correctional Institution — a multi-million-dollar state correctional facility.

The city’s 66-acre industrial park, located on the west side of town and adjacent to Interstate 39, State Highway 16, and a rail line, is a designated Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District and zoned for industrial use. Here, the newest addition to the industrial park, a business incubator to help foster new business and increase employment opportunities, the Portage Enterprise Center is available to entrepreneurs and small businesses looking for a start.

City officials

City officials are dedicated to continuous economic development and growth in the business park and other areas in Portage. With continued redevelopment of the historic downtown area, the excellent transportation access available through our municipal airport and rail lines, Portage is the place to grow your business. The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce is here to help. Visit www.portagewi.com or the City of Portage website at www.portagewi.gov for additional information pertaining to business development.

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