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Minneapolis has the best parks in the nation and it isn't even close, study says

Minnehaha Falls in Minnehaha Park.
Minnehaha Falls in Minnehaha Park.

According to The Trust for Public Land's 2013 "ParkScore" rankings, Minneapolis not only has the best parks in the county, but the City of Lakes has actually left the competition in the dust.

:::: UPDATE :::: NYC editor disses Minneapolis's awesome parks: The city "is in like, Canada or something"

The ParkScore numbers are based on three factors: the percentage of residents living within a 10-minute walk from a park, median park size and the percentage of total city area dedicated to parks, and a combination of the number of playgrounds per 10,000 residents and per-capita park spending, the AP reports.

The rankings looked at the 50 largest U.S. cities and scored them on a scale up to 100. Minneapolis's score of 81 earned a "five park benches" rating. According to the Pioneer Press, it's the first time a city has received that distinction since the Trust has been compiling the ParkScore numbers.

New York City came in second with a score of 73.5, followed by a third-place tie between San Francisco, Sacramento, and Boston at 72.5.

St. Paul isn't large enough to be included in the rankings, but the Twin Cities as a whole reportedly still would've topped the list.

"Trust for Public Land officials ran the numbers... and found that the combined Minneapolis-St. Paul score is nearly unchanged when the capital city is added to the mix," the PiPress writes.

Perhaps Trust officials might have to create a new "six park benches" category if plans to convert the Star Tribune property into downtown Minneapolis's largest park by the time the new Vikings stadium opens come to fruition.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.


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