Minneapolis ranks near the top on 'best downtowns' in the US list

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It may be covered in snow at the moment, but Minneapolis's downtown is one of the best in the nation – No. 2, in fact, according to a new ranking by Livability.com.

For its "Top 10 Best Downtowns" list, the website looked at population increases since 2010, percentage of new homeowners, "walk scores," arts and cultural attractions, among other criteria.

Minneapolis scored high in these areas – Livability says it "pulsates with energy and creativity" – but it earned special praise (and a lofty position in the top 10) for its unique features.

The website lauded the fact that most residents "live within six blocks of a body of water," and was also enthusiastic about the city's network of skyways and its active live music and theater scene.

It's not the first time Minneapolis has earned recognition from Livability. Last year, it was ranked No. 5 on the site's "Best Cities for New College Grads" list, partly because of its "stable economy" and affordable rent.

Not to be outdone, Fargo also boasts one of the nation's finest downtowns, coming it at No. 7. Livability says the city is "highly attractive" to young professionals because of its affordability, proximity to jobs and entertainment scene.

Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, topped Livability's list.

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