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Map Monday: Constellation City Map of Minnesota & Neighboring States

Here is a fun and graphically minimalist approach to mapping cities in different states, from the Barely Maps website created by Peter Gorman. These “maps” show the largest cities in any state as stars in constellations, with the largest city as the large star, the lines demarcate a larger distance):

Here is Minnesota:

Constellation Map Mn

And our neighboring states of


Constellation Map


Constellation Map Ia

South Dakota (I like this one):

Constellation Map Sd

North Dakota:

Constellation Map Nd

Check out all 50 states, as well as Gorman’s other fun cartographic designs.

11 thoughts on “Map Monday: Constellation City Map of Minnesota & Neighboring States

  1. Lou Miranda

    That’s fun, and an easy mnemonic for each state.

    Any St. Paul-ophile will tell you, though, that highlighting only the biggest city might make sense for some states, but not for a “twin cities”.

    As a graphic artist, he probably just did the only-one-big-star thing for convenience. But don’t most constellation maps & drawings show the relative brightness of each star? That would be more accurate and a better mnemonic for each state. (And, like real constellations, you could see how things change over time.)

    Zooming in, it would be fun for metro areas, too, with a constellation showing the primary city/cities and their satellite suburbs.

    And then the connecting lines could be transit… but then we’re getting into the domain of subway maps, not constellations.

    1. Ray Lewis

      A constellation creating website with selectable star cities, and other mappable data overlays, along with big screen projection capability would be a good holiday gift!

    2. Eric AnondsonEric Anondson

      I would have rather the star represent metro areas, the the entire Twin Cities metro get the big star and the four smaller stars Rochester, Duluth, St. Cloud, and Mankato. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

        1. Eric AnondsonEric Anondson

          Based on what I remember from Met Council forecasts, I think that in the next decade Brooklyn Park is predicted to over take Bloomington as the most populous suburb.

      1. Lou Miranda

        That’s a good idea. Although Moorhead is bigger than Mankato, according to Wikipedia.

        I was thinking more about the connector lines. They reflect transportation. Cities, depending on when they first expanded, grew up along coasts, riverbanks, rail lines, or interstates, so the lines between cities/stars reflect that.

        1. Lou Miranda

          Oh, and these maps would be cool for mapping the major commercial centers/nodes/corridors within a city/suburb.

          Gorman’s Barely Maps site is filled with cool ideas.

          1. Eric AnondsonEric Anondson

            Does Moorhead and any suburb on the Minnesota side add up to bigger than Mankato, North Mankato, and all the rest of its region?

            Complicating things are that Duluth and Moorhead are part of a dual-state metro. Should we just count the Minnesota part?

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