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Minneapolis - City of Lakes

Posted December 28, 2019 @ 3:32pm | by Doug

Above – Lake of the Isles home in Minneapolis

The minne in Minneapolis, as well as in Minnesota means water in the Dakota language.

Minneapolis is dubbed The City of Lakes for its many lakes, streams and waterfalls.  Most importantly, the Mighty Mississippi flows through a lush valley on its 13-mile journey to Saint Paul, then on to Saint Louis, Memphis and New Orleans, and at last to the Gulf of Mexico.

As is its sister city, St. Paul, it is also nestled in a vast hardwood forest.  Seen from above, the tree canopy covers many of the homes.  Autumn is intoxicating!

The annual Twin Cities Marathon, run among this autumnal splendor, is considered by the runners as the most beautiful course in the nation…not just for the colors, lakes and streams, but for stunning architecture all along the route.

The two cities were born about the same time, around 1840, so the architecture goes back to that period. However, St. Paul, because it was a river port and private enterprise zone, matured far sooner. Its architecture reflects a European and Victorian-era influence.

Upstream, Minneapolis, in its early going was a closed government operation to develop the hydro power of St. Anthony Falls. By the time Minneapolis opened up for private development in the 1850s, building styles had changed and today we see early Prairie Style homes and overall a more modern appearance.

The commercial buildings are similarly distinct, with Saint Paul representing more of an Eastern type city; Minneapolis, meanwhile, is taller, shinier, glitzier, Western-style. It is where East meets West. Each city is absolutely charming in its own way. Minneapolis skyscrapers include works by architects Cesar Pelli, I.M. Pei, Phillip Johnson, Jean Nouvel and Frank Gehry.

The newest architectural marvel in Minneapolis, is the new $1.1 billion Minnesota Vikings football stadium.   It suggests an ancient Viking ship bearing muscular, sweaty, aggressive guys fighting over an oddly shaped ball which bounces unpredictably. ;-)



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