Saint Paul & Minneapolis Among Leaders for Residents' Well-Being
Of the nation's 52 largest metropolitan areas surveyed in 2009, the Twin Cities Metropolitan area ranked 4th best in the nation in terms of well-being, according to the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. San Jose, Calif., Washington, D.C., and Raleigh, N.C., were 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. San Francisco was 5th. That's a lot of coastal cities, but we know that one reason the Twin Cities are great is because we experience all of the seasons here in full force without the earthquakes or the hurricanes.
This Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index defines large cities as those with a population size of 1 million or greater. Interviews were conducted with more than 353,000 Americans during 2009, asking individuals to assess their jobs, finances, physical health, emotional state of mind and communities. Technically, the poll combined the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Bloomington to determine its results, but the standard of living in the Twin Cities is relatively the same throughout the metro. Of the six sub-indexes that comprise the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, San Jose and the Twin Cities had the highest scores on two indexes each in 2009: Emotional Health and Basic Access in Minneapolis-St. Paul and Physical Health and Healthy Behaviors in San Jose.
In a larger Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index poll that expands the 52 metropolitan areas to include a total of 162 large and medium-sized cities, locations shift a little bit but the Twin Cities are still relatively high on the list. Boulder, CO, Holland-Grand Haven, MI, Honolulu, HI, Provo-Orem, UT, and Santa Rosa-Petaluma, CA, made up the top 5. The Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington areas appeared on the list at 16th. We're still included in the top 10% of 162 for well-being, even when the competition has been expanded to include a tropical island with universal health care.