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201309_BPL_APPLEVALLEY
Apple Valley, MN
City of Apple Valley

Top 50 rank: 17

Population: 49,863

If you don't mind cold winters, there's plenty to recommend this family-friendly Twin Cities suburb. There's a wide range of affordable homes: The median sale price is around $200,000.

Cars are still the de facto transport here, but the city recently added a $112 million rapid-transit bus system that connects the downtown to area attractions like the Mall of America. Apple Valley is also home to the Minnesota Zoo and 53 parks. --H.L.

Apple Valley, MN

Town stats

Median family income (per year) $93,210
Job growth % (2010-2012) 2.03%
Median home price (2012) $179,000
Reading test scores (% above/below average) 7.1%
Math test scores (% above/below average) 7.9%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 13
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 223

Financials

Housing

Education

Quality of life

Leisure and culture

Weather

Meet the neighbors