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A Region That Sees Racism as a Threat to Its Economy

Downtown Minneapolis, MN Jim Mone / AP

  • If cities and states don’t start implementing policies with these racial barriers in mind, the fears of the Twin Cities’ regional planners—higher rates of poverty and lower rates of homeownership—could persist across the country.
  • Related: City's failures on North Side are the overlooked outrage

Alexia Fernandez Campbell, the Atlantic

Oct 26, 2016 | For decades, Minneapolis has been heralded as an American success story: The Twin Cities area is home to one of the largest concentrations of Fortune-500-company headquarters, and, relative to other large American cities, has low unemployment, little poverty, and plenty of affordable housing. Much of the prosperity, which has been called “The Minnesota Miracle,” has been attributed an unusual approach to sharing tax revenues between rich and poor communities in the region.

But two years ago, an uncomfortable reality came to light: The Metropolitan Council, a regional planning council, began analyzing Census data and discovered that the Twin Cities metro area is hardly a land of opportunity for everyone. The area had the largest wealth gap, employment gap, and homeownership gap between white residents and people of color among the country’s 25 largest metro areas. Two years after the council’s original report, little has improved, though the employment gap has narrowed a bit.

Alexia Fernandez Campbell is a staff writer at the Atlantic, where she covers immigration and business. She was previously a reporter at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel and the Spanish-language newspaper of The Palm Beach Post.

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Related: Now you can follow Evergreene Digest on Twitter <s>.’s Less Visible, and More Troubled, Side, John Eligon, New York (NY) Times

  • “You have to not only talk about it, you have to be about it,” she said, “and be willing to go out there and stand and take action.” --lifelong resident, Angela Avent, 36
  • City's failures on North Side are the overlooked outrage
  • Minneapolis Grapples With a Community Being Left Behind