Relocating to Minneapolis Saint Paul

More than 3 million people call Minneapolis Saint Paul home. Here’s why.

MinneapolisWhen you’re looking to move to a new place, you want to make sure you’re making the best decision for you and your family. Minneapolis Saint Paul is a metro on the rise, and worth the notoriety. Good news for relocating individuals and families in search of new homes: This cultural life full of quality museums, lush greenery, water views, an international airport, restaurants and overall city vibrancy can play into home prices and overall home value, according to the Minnesota Association of Realtors. Your move to the metro gets you more than just an incredible place to call home. Consider it a solid investment. Minneapolis Saint Paul’s strong, diversified economy, coupled with plentiful health care, recreation options and some of the best schools in the nation, have made the area a destination for thousands of new residents every year. In the past year, the Minneapolis Saint Paul area has earned many accolades for being active (No. 2 city for bike sharing, Urban Land magazine), great for families (ZipRealty), gay-friendly (Census Bureau) and for quality of life (Opportunity Nation), for starters.

Surrounding Metro

Minneapolis Saint Paul is not only fortunate to have two healthy and unique core cities, but also to have many affluent communities surrounding it. The 10-county metro area spans approximately 64 miles east to west. Urban sprawl continues to draw in the outlying suburbs, such as Rogers, Blaine, Chaska and Apple Valley. While Minneapolis Saint Paul is a driving metropolis, it doesn’t take long to get from door to door. Commuters have several options, including a commuter train that connects the northern suburbs to downtown Minneapolis and a metro train that connects Minneapolis and Bloomington. A metro connection between Minneapolis and Saint Paul will open mid-2014. These efforts only bring more people to the already thriving downtowns, as well as curb traffic on our main freeways.

Surrounding Minneapolis Saint Paul are unique, suburban communities with histories and activities all their own. Stillwater, the picturesque first city in Minnesota, lies to the east of Saint Paul. Other growing communities to the east include Woodbury, Lake Elmo and Cottage Grove. To the north, you’ll find popular suburbs such as Roseville, Shoreview, Blaine, Plymouth and Maple Grove. Each community continues to add attractions, shopping and health care options for its growing population.

Head west and you’ll reach the suburbs of Edina, Eden Prairie, Minnetonka, Chaska and Shakopee, which house attractions such as Valleyfair, Canterbury Racetrack, Lake Minnetonka and several shopping malls. To the south, favorite spots such as Mall of America, the Minnesota Zoo and Buck Hill ski area in Bloomington, Apple Valley and Burnsville, respectively. No matter what community you choose to live in, all these attractions are within easy reach.


In 2013, the Bureau of Labor Statistics listed Minneapolis Saint Paul as having the lowest unemployment of large metro areas and ranked our cities No. 4 for career advancement. In 2012 Ajilon Professional Staffing cited the Twin Cities as the best place to find employment in the U.S., and in 2011 The Business Journals placed us among the best for small business. With more than 90 percent of all major industries represented, the financial firm of Goldman Sachs once called Minnesota’s economy one of the most diverse in the nation. Nearly all of the state’s Fortune 500 companies are located in the metro area, including Target, Supervalu, 3M, Best Buy, Medtronic, UnitedHealth Group and Xcel Energy.

Minneapolis Saint Paul houses some of the nation’s fastest-growing companies, including Aveda Corporation, Caribou Coffee, Polaris and Carlson Companies (Radisson Hotels), and the state ranks second only to California for medical technology industry employment, with a concentration three times that of the nation. Additionally, with 32 being the approximate median age, it’s evident that a young, proactive workforce will fuel our industries for years to come.


Minneapolis Saint Paul has been voted a top city for intelligent people (Travel + Leisure, 2012), one of the most literate (Central Connecticut State College, 2013) and the No. 1 place for families to live (ZipRealty, 2013).

Through the state’s open enrollment program, your child can attend schools in districts outside of where you live. With high test scores, high-ranking teachers and an abundance of extracurricular activities, our public schools turn out well-rounded students ready for college. From the independent perspective, private school options (there are more than 200 in the metro area) are plentiful here, with focuses ranging from multicultural to college preparatory to religious studies, producing dozens of National Merit Scholars and promoting unconventional learning techniques.

With the University of Minnesota anchored between the two downtowns, educational excellence seems central to the makeup of the metro as a whole. The University of Minnesota serves more than 60,000 undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral students at its four campuses—in Minneapolis Saint Paul, Duluth, Crookston and Morris, Minn. Besides the University of Minnesota, there are 11 others, including Macalester College, Hamline University, Augsburg College and the University of St. Thomas. St. Catherine University, located in Saint Paul, is the largest Catholic college for women in the country.

Health Care

Minneapolis Saint Paul residents have the health care system to thank in part for their high quality of life. The Minneapolis Saint Paul area ranked No. 1 on The American College of Sports Medicine’s list of America’s Fittest Cities in 2013 and in 2012 Minneapolis ranked No. 4 in the nation for health care by The Commonwealth Fund. Minnesota enjoys top medical facilities and a strong emphasis on access to health care and medical technology. More than 8,000 health care companies line Minnesota’s 350-mile-long “Medical Alley,” which begins in Rochester and continues to northern Minnesota.

U.S. News and World Report ranked several of our hospitals—including St. John’s Hospital, Abbott Northwestern and the University of Minnesota Medical Center—among its Best Hospitals of 2013. The Mayo Clinic also made this list—on its Honor Roll. Located just 80 miles away in the southern Minnesota city of Rochester, the Mayo Clinic offers residents easy access to one of the top medical institutions in the world, one that’s cared for high-profile patients such as former President Gerald Ford.

Moving to the Twin Cities?

Twin Cities Living is the ultimate guide for new residents and those planning a move to the Twin Cities area. The relocation guide profiles neighborhoods, schools and the medical and business communities. Enjoy tips from Realtors and search a comparative list of public and private schools. Twin Cities Living also shows the wealth of opportunities to shop, dine and play within the metropolitan area. Get to know this amazing community and all that it offers.

Sign up for Minnesota Monthly magazine's e-newsletters to stay on top of the latest Twin Cities events and topics.

Read Twin Cities Living magazine's Digital Edition

Find the Twin Cities' hottest events on Minnesota Monthly's events calendar.

Subscribe to Midwest Home magazine for the latest in Minnesota home design trends.