Map Monday: Cutting Board Neighborhoods of Minneapolis and Saint Paul

Via Scott Shaffer’s Twitter feed, here’s a wooden map for you. It’s a cutting board available for sale under the “Totally Bamboo” brand, that features the different neighborhoods of Minneapolis and Saint Paul

Here’s the map, followed by some cutting remarks:

OK, so… Minneapolis famously has way too many neighborhoods. Over 80, at last count, and this cutting board does seem to get them all correctly identified and labeled. A tip of the cap to the Totally Bamboo company, which is definitely not local, and which makes these for different geographic scales and sells them all over the US.

Their map of Saint Paul, on the other hand, is very poor, and includes neighborhood demarcations and terminology that does not in any way exist.

For example, the West Side is laughably wrong. There are neither  neighborhoods called “Baker-Annapolis” nor “Concord-Robert” on the West Side. The former would simply be called “Cherokee Bluffs” or something to that effect. Latter would be either the “West Side Flats” or (simply) “the Flats” and the “district Del Sol” to demarcate the changed name of Concord Street, now known as Cesar Chavez.

Somehow, Highland is simply missing, effaced by the Minneapolis skyline (or a Ford site plan rendering). And Railroad Island is gerrymandered up into neighboring districts.

Meanwhile, the North End is absent, and nobody other than a Google mapping algorithm would ever refer to the “North of Maryland” or “South of Maryland” neighborhoods. (Ugh! The only thing north of Maryland is the Maxon-Dixon line.)

The takeaway? If purchasing Christmas presents at your neighborhood hardware store or co-op, do not give this cutting board to anyone with any working knowledge of Saint Paul. It will offend them.

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.