More Bicycling Accolades for Minneapolis

“Wagner’s music is better than it sounds.”

–Anonymous music critic

“Who are you going to believe — me, or your own lying eyes?”

–New Yorker cartoon

Walk Score, the company whose 1-100 rating system purports to tell home buyers (and renters!) how walkable a given neighborhood is, is beta testing a sequel:  “bike score.”

Besides providing an overall score, the company’s Web site offers maps showing “Bike Lanes,” “Hills,” “Destinations,” and “Bike Commuters.”

The site also ranks the “most bikeable” cities in the U.S. and Canada.

The U.S. winner (and by a lot)? 

Minneapolis, with a score of 79, blowing past runners-up Portland and San Francisco, both tied at 70.

That comes on the heels of Minneapolis being crowned “America’s Best Bike City” by Bicycling Magazine last year.

Reviewing the Reviewer, or, “Psst!  I’ve Got an Easier Way to Tell”

While I’m not prepared to announce that bike scores are a bust ala QR, or “Quick Response” codes (see “S-P-L-A-T!! The Next Big Thing?  Not Yet“), I don’t exactly see them lighting the residential real estate world on fire, either.

That’s based on what I’ve observed with my Buyer clients, as well as my own sense living in an urban neighborhood in Minneapolis (near Cedar Lake, a few miles southwest of downtown).

So, if you want to see how walkable a neighborhood is . . . look for pedestrians.

If you want to see how bikeable it is . . . look for bicyclists (or the next best thing, a bike-share kiosk, pictured above).

The only two caveats to the above:  1) Minneapolis has an extensive skyway system, so the best place to look for pedestrians downtown is on the second floor; 2) negative wind chills, like we’re prone to locally, put a serious damper on outdoor activity.

P.S.:  My very favorite place for walking — Manhattan’s Upper West Side — hardly needs a pseudo-scientific rating system to let people know that.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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