Chart of the Day: Minneapolis and Saint Paul Populations as Percent of their Peak

Via erstwhile gadfly David Brauer, here’s an interesting chart. The 2016 census population estimates came out last week and sparked an interesting conversation on Twitter this week. Here’s the original population chart, via former board member / forum founder Nick Magrino:

(He got the chart from a recently released Met Council report…)

Following the chart tweeting, Brauer took some the new data and created another chart, showing both Minneapolis and Saint Paul’s populations as a percentage of their all-time peaks. It’s interesting for sure!

The key question quickly arose: Why did Saint Paul not shrink as much (by percentage) as Minneapolis following the end of World War II and the growth of the suburbs?

Check out the Twitter conversation for some theories about that.

(Note: my point about race/class violence was based on Mary Lethert Wingerd’s thesis in her book Claiming the City…)

Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments below.

Bill Lindeke

About Bill Lindeke

Pronouns: he/him

Bill Lindeke has writing blogging about sidewalks and cities since 2005, ever since he read Jane Jacobs. He is a lecturer in Urban Studies at the University of Minnesota Geography Department, the Cityscape columnist at Minnpost, and has written multiple books on local urban history. He was born in Minneapolis, but has spent most of his time in St Paul. Check out Twitter @BillLindeke or on Facebook.