Money Magazine's 2010 Best Places to Live, Eden Prairie

Eden Prairie, Minnesota is the Top Place to Live

View of Eden Prairie from across Staring Lake. City of Eden Prairie.
Money Magazine just released their top 100 best small cities in the US to live. It’s well worth taking the time to peruse, whether or not you’re thinking of moving. Maybe your town made the list? Or maybe you’re thinking of relocating to a place that is more family-friendly, healthier or a quieter pace? For whatever reason, Money Magazine's list is hard to beat.

So, let’s take a closer look at the number one small city on the 2010 list:

1. Eden Prairie, Minnesota

First on the list is Eden Prairie, Minnesota. With a population of 64,000, and an unemployment rate of just 5.1%, it’s easy to see from the description on the CNN Money site why it achieved the number one spot. I thought I’d investigate a little further to see what this town has to offer outside of the statistics that CNN Money provides.


First up, recreation-wise, the city boasts almost 120 miles of multipurpose trails and 1,000 acres of parkland that also contains a sledding hill and ski trails. From its website, Eden Prairie describes year-round activities that promote health and community, while maintaining a variety of sporting options regardless of age.


The city is also home to McKinstry Company, a business described by President Obama as a “model for the nation” for its work in creating more energy-efficient office buildings and schools.
With the City leading the way, they have partnered with McKinstry Company to put forward the “20-40-15 initiative” which asks that the City “improve energy efficiency in all of its facilities by 20 percent, increase the fuel efficiency of its vehicle fleet by 40 percent, and accomplish these goals by the year 2015” (reference from Eden Prairie's website).

Why People Move to Eden Prairie

According to Eden Prairie’s promotional video, the two main reasons why people move to their city is because of its parks and schools, with the city having the largest high school in the area that is known for its academic achievements (90% of graduates go on to college). Other reasons include its location (close to the Twin Cities) and bordering Bloomington (shopping at Mall of America), and its business-friendly attitude. Over 2000 businesses call Eden Prairie home, employing approximately 50,000 people. Companies include Starkey, Stratasys, Digital River and Celleration.

A Few Stats

These stats are listed on the City website.
  • Average household income: $123,466
  • Number of single family homes: 16,375
  • median value of a single-family home: $305,242

But don’t take my word for it, check out the City's website to see if Eden Prairie is your best place to live.