Monday, January 14, 2008

A short walk between cities

I bet Texans can't say "I walked from Dallas to Fort Worth this afternoon." But if you live here, you can say "I walked from St. Paul to Minneapolis in 5 minutes." It's an especially easy thing to do if you are at the western end of Marshall Avenue in St. Paul and you cross the Lake Street bridge, then BAM! you are in the Longfellow neighborhood of Minneapolis! I love that if you live in the Twin Cities you can get from one city to another with relative ease--and without countless suburbs separating the two. In some places the river divides the cities and in others places there's no real defining feature that tells you that you've crossed a border.

I was also reminded of how wonderful it is to live where the Mississippi River traverses. A national treasure flowing through our cities, its character changing as it winds itself past steep limestone cliffs, along built-up river banks, and through locks and dams built in another age. Walking along the river trails (which are on both the St. Paul and Minneapolis sides of the river), especially in the winter, is peaceful, bracing, and inspiring.

Images: map from Big Stick maps; Lake Street bridge aerial photo from

1 comment:

Ed Kohler said...

Great post. My house is in that photo. I'm on the Minneapolis side of the Lake Street Bridge.