Minneapolis park system ranked No. 1 in US; St. Paul comes in at No. 3

Two of the top three parks systems in the U.S. are right here in Minnesota, according to a list released by the Trust for Public Land.

Minneapolis was ranked No. 1, according to an index based on access, acreage, investment and amenities in public parks. St. Paul was not far behind, coming in at No. 3.

According to the Trust for Public Land, 98% of Minneapolis residents and 99% of St. Paul residents live within a 10-minute walk of a park, and both cities scored a 100 out of 100 in investment in public parks. They were neck and neck in the total number of parks, too — 269 in Minneapolis and 264 in St. Paul.

Acreage was the biggest differentiator between the two cities: Minneapolis scored a 64 out of 100, while St. Paul scored a 53.

After the list was released, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board Superintendent Al Bangoura issued the following statement: 

"We are honored by the top ranking and recognize how important parks are to all Minneapolis residents, particularly during this national health crisis. We remain committed to providing critical park improvements and services, with a focus on the most racially diverse and economically challenged areas of the city. For years we have used equity tools and metrics in establishing our annual budget, capital improvement budget and recreation programming, and we will continue to do so during this pandemic."