Minneapolis: A Miracle?

Posted by Kris Lindahl on Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 at 11:02am.

Kudos again for our City of Lakes, this time from The Atlantic. In his article, “The Miracle of Minneapolis,” Derek Thompson claims that “No other place mixes affordability, opportunity, and wealth so well. What’s its secret?”

To be fair to our neighbors, the article speaks of the entire Minneapolis–St. Paul metro area, not just our fair city. Thompson cites a Harvard-Berkeley mobility study to determine which U.S. cities have “the best odds that a child born into a low-income household will move up into the middle class or beyond.”  

Of course the biggies, like New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles made the top of the list. The problem with those cities, however, is that when you look at homeowner’s monthly payments, relative to the area’s median household income, those cities were the least affordable.

The Twin Cities metro region, however, was named among three metros where “at least half the homes are within reach for young, middle-class families,” according to Thompson. The other two? Salt Lake City and Pittsburg.

Thompson goes on to say that our metro has a higher median household income than the other two, as well as Chicago, Los Angeles and New York. We have the highest college graduation rate and lowest poverty rate.

Other features that contribute to the Miracle of Minneapolis include: 

  • The Twin Cities region is the headquarters for 19 Fortune 500 companies. That’s more than other metros of similar size can claim. 
  • We retain our college-educated, high-earning work force better than all but one of the 25 largest cities. 
  • In the past, we didn’t concentrate our low-income housing into ghettos, but require the construction of such housing throughout the suburbs --  a condition Thompson describes as "durable."

It’s an interesting article and if you want to know more, you can read it here.

Need to sell your home?  Find out what it is worth.

Leave a Comment