Minneapolis' University Community Highlights

There is both a community and a neighborhood with the University designation in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This community is diverse in history, heritage, and has a wide variety of residents including retirees, families, singles, and students. Here we will touch briefly on each neighborhood within this the University Community.

University - This neighborhood is nearly at the center of the University community. The Mississippi River divides the neighborhood into the west bank and the east bank. The area flourishes because of the University of Minnesota’s presence. Actually, the school takes up a nearly the whole neighborhood. The University of Minnesota is one of the top public universities in the country. While there isn't very much available real estate in the University neighborhood, the houses, condos, and apartments are prime properties for investment.

Cedar Riverside – East of Minneapolis’ Downtown, in the southwest corner of the University community and along the majestic Mississippi River, is the Cedar Riverside neighborhood. Also known as the "West Bank," this neighborhood is named after the intersection of the two main avenues here, Cedar and Riverside. Cedar-Riverside is nearly as old as Minneapolis itself. During the late 1890s, the area had a thriving community of Scandinavian immigrants, most of whom worked in the milling and lumber industries along the Mississippi. The neighborhood has changed a lot since then, and presently, Cedar-Riverside neighborhood is one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse areas of Minneapolis. This diversity enhances the neighborhood’s mixture of restaurants, pubs and cafes, as well as the live music played at various small local venues.

Nicollet Island / East Bank - The combined neighborhoods of Nicollet Island/East Bank include Nicollet Island, located on the Mississippi river east of Downtown, and the East Bank of the river. The Island was named after Joseph Nicollet, a French-born scientist and geographer who led three expeditions through Minnesota. Nicollet Island is a residential area which features primarily historical Victorian homes. In fact, all but two houses on the island date from 1864 to 1898. The expansive Nicollet Island Park is located at the southern tip of the island and hosts the Nicollet Island Pavilion and other historic points of interest. Most of the island is historic, though, and has been named as part of the St. Anthony Falls Heritage Zone. In contrast, the East Bank area has new housing developments and refurbished condominiums. East Bank’s Riverplace is a collection of commercial buildings, offices, retail stores, restaurants, and more. With approximately one thousand people, the Nicollet Island/East Bank neighborhood is relatively sparse in population.

Marcy Holmes – East of Nicollet Island / East Bank, is the Marcy-Holmes district. Marcy-Holmes is named for two famous Americans: former secretary of state William L. Marcy and poet and novelist Oliver Wendell Holmes. Marcy-Holmes is ideally situated directly across the Mississippi river from Downtown Minneapolis, with the University of Minnesota on its east boundary, and within close proximity to the East Hennepin and Central Avenue commercial district. This area is a popular for U of M students to live. One of Minneapolis' oldest neighborhoods, Marcy-Holmes includes Florence Court, an area that has been designated as a historic landmark. Florence Court contains about 50 residential homes from the 1800s and early 1900s. These beautiful houses set the tone for the rest of the neighborhood. Various styles of apartment buildings and duplexes are also located here. In the Marcy-Holmes neighborhood is what is known as Dinkytown: an eclectic collection of small businesses, unique restaurants, bars, cafes, and more.

Como – On the eastern side of the University community you can find the Como neighborhood. Como is named after Como Avenue, which in turn took its name from Lake Como in northern Italy, a popular tourist destination. This neighborhood is largely residential. Much of the housing stock in Como has been converted into student housing. The homes here consist of bungalows and Victorian from the early 1900s and styles popular during the 1920s, but there are a few newer duplexes and single-family houses.

Prospect Park / E River Rd - Prospect Park is bordered on the east by the City of Saint Paul, on the west by the University of Minnesota, on the south by the Mississippi River, and the train tracks and the South East industrial area to the north. With its close proximity to the Downtown districts of both Minneapolis and St. Paul, most residences in this neighborhood are within walking distance of a plethora of entertainment venues, recreational activities, and shopping centers. Frequent local events foster a close knit community feeling. Residents of Prospect Park partake in the Fire and Ice Festival in February, the Spring Holiday Concert in April, and the Luxton Park Painter's Art Show in May, just to name a few. The neighborhood's most prominent and recognizable landmark is the "Witch's Hat" water tower, which was built in 1913. Prospect Park is also home to the Wiley House, which was designed by famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

The neighborhoods that make up the University Community of Minneapolis are unique each in their own way. They offer a range of housing options and diverse populations. From students to young professionals, new families to empty-nesters, there options for many types of people to call University home. Condos in this area start at around $100,000 and single-family homes start at around $120,000. In June 2007, the average home sales price for a single family home or condominium in University, MN was $247,762. A higher priced home in this area could sell for close to $1,000,000.

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