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Why Choose Crawford County

Centrally located at the heart of the Driftless region between Dubuque, Iowa and La Crosse, Wisconsin, Crawford County offers a variety of opportunities for businesses to locate and thrive within minutes of the Midwest’s most spectacular scenic areas and educational hubs.  Known for its creative independent spirit, engineering know-how, and top-notch health industries, the area is home to several of America’s most well-known companies.

The ease of modern rural living here includes world-class trout streams, Mississippi River fishing, abundant outdoor recreation where silent sports thrive, and enjoying the bounty from a national hotbed of family-owned dairy, beef, orchard, and vegetable farms.


The Mississippi River forms the region’s border to the west, and the Wisconsin River flows along the southern portion of the county.

Served by two major US Highways, 18 & 61, and three Wisconsin Highways 27, 35 & 131, and an excellent network of well-maintained County Roads, numerous large businesses operate here and connect to the world with ease.

city distance to PDC / driftless region


City Miles Drive Time
Madison 100 1:45
Dubuque 60 1:16
LaCrosse 60 1:10
Milwaukee 181 3:02
Chicago 225 4:03
Rochester 115 2:12
Green Bay 241 4:04
Waterloo 96 1:46
Cedar Rapids 100 1:54
Quad Cities 131 2:20



Driftless Development INC strives to ensure Crawford County remains business friendly and continues to offer the solutions businesses need. Low taxes, robust infrastructure, workforce training and development – no matter the project or the industry, Driftless Development INC has the tools to make it a success.

Several established companies call Crawford County home including 3M, Cabela’s (retail store & distribution center), Prairie Industries, Dillman-Astec Equipment, Miniature Precision Components, Building Automation Products, Inc., Universal Forrest Products, and Solomon Corp., due to a well-established infrastructure, talented workforce and innovative spirit.

Crawford County is home to a business-friendly environment including no local business tax and low worker’s compensation insurance rates. Its workforce is highly productive, and the City of Prairie du Chien and neighboring communities continue to dedicate themselves to ensuring the talent of the future enjoy affordable and safe living.


Crawford County’s credit position is solid with an A1 rating.  The notable credit factors include a healthy financial position, a negligible debt burden and a mid-ranged pension liability. Also reflected are an adequate tax base and a moderate wealth and income profile.

Crawford County is located in southwestern Wisconsin, bounded on the west by the Mississippi River and the Iowa state line. The county seat of Prairie du Chien is approximately 100 miles west of Madison. The county has a population of 16,415 and a low population density of 29 people per square mile. The county’s median family income is $56,657 and the August 2018 unemployment rate was 3.4%. The largest industry sectors that drive the local economy are retail trade, manufacturing, and farm employment.

The Driftless area in Crawford County consists of two major separate jurisdictions, each with a long-standing reputation for collaboration and cooperation: Crawford County and the City of Prairie du Chien.

In both jurisdictions, rezoning applications filed by new or existing businesses are reviewed by their respective Planning Commissions, which issue recommendations to the Board of Supervisors or the City Council. The Board and the Council make the final decisions on rezoning requests expeditiously.

Contact us to learn more about the way our government is structured to help businesses in Crawford County.


Crawford County and the Prairie du Chien area are part of the greater southwestern Wisconsin region and northeastern Iowa and home to a diverse, highly skilled and educated workforce.  Area businesses take advantage of a labor pool of more than 100,000 workers supplemented by 41,000 graduates from our region’s colleges and universities each year.

Crawford County’s employment is more heavily influenced by hospitality, tourism, and agriculture than the state.

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