UrbanThoreau Services

UrbanThoreau LLC is a consulting firm specializing in research, grant writing and creating Places for People. We provide expertise in livable communities, sustainable transportation and home energy performance.

UrbanThoreau’s work is defined by constant cutting-edge research. The fruits of our research are borne out by successful grant writing and program management services to non-profits, businesses and government agencies.

We are a progressive, forward-looking business with strongly held ideals for the environment and community. We believe that environmental and community-oriented practices can become an easy and desirable choice for individuals. We believe that self-interests can be aligned with altruistic ideals to improve our environment, our communities and economic sustainability through innovative land use, transportation and rational energy solutions.

We recognize that transportation is the crucial element in energy, environmental and livability policy. We believe that creative 'commuter choice' programs will be in increasing demand as vibrant urban life becomes more desirable for living, working, learning and playing.

Parking Cash-Out is UrbanThoreau’s signature transportation initiative which creates win-win results for all stakeholders – businesses, employees, governments and neighborhoods alike.

UrbanThoreau is also about high-performance homes. Our research has revealed that investment in comfort-oriented, energy efficiency upgrades provide guaranteed high financial returns. We believe that energy efficiency investments should be regarded as an integral part of any family’s financial portfolio, much as insurance, real estate and mutual funds currently are.

Recent Projects
UrbanThoreau recently wrote a grant to institute a Parking Cash-Out feasibility study in Madison and is currently implementing it under contract with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

The firm has recently written grants for the Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin for a Safe Routes to School Program (to Trek Corporation), a statewide Bike to Work Week Program (to WisDOT), a corporate Bike to Work Program (to Wisconsin Energy), and Hank Aaron Trail Advocacy Funding (to the Potawatomi Community Foundation). Two have been funded and two are pending. UrbanThoreau is currently writing a major grant to the Joyce Foundation for the BFW to carry out a statewide campaign for dedicated, long term, sizeable bicycle/pedestrian funding from the state and federal governments.

The firm’s president, Michael D. Barrett is active on several fronts in promoting the livability, sustainability and neighborliness of his community on the east side of Madison, Wisconsin.