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Fridley, Minnesota
—  City  —
Main city offices
Location of Fridley, Minnesota
Coordinates: 45°5′8″N 93°15′34″W / 45.08556°N 93.25944°W / 45.08556; -93.25944
Country United States
State Minnesota
County Anoka
 - Total 10.9 sq mi (28.2 km2)
 - Land 10.2 sq mi (26.3 km2)
 - Water 0.7 sq mi (1.9 km2)
Elevation 860 ft (262 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 27,449
 - Density 2,701.3/sq mi (1,043.0/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP codes 55421, 55432
Area code(s) 763
FIPS code 27-22814[1]
GNIS feature ID 0643953[2]

Fridley is a city in Anoka County, Minnesota, United States. The population was 27,449 at the 2000 census. It was incorporated in 1949 as a village and became a city in 1957. It is part of the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area. Fridley is a "first ring" or "inner ring" suburb in the Northern part of the Twin Cities. It borders Minneapolis at its southern border. Neighboring first ring suburbs are Columbia Heights, Minnesota and Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.



The post-European/American settlement history of Fridley begins with the construction of the Red River Ox Cart Trail in 1844, which traveled through Minnesota Territory from St. Paul (present day Minnesota) to Pembina (present day North Dakota), now East River Road (also Anoka County Highway 1). The road was used to transport furs to the south and other various supplies to the Red River Valley settlers in the north.

In 1847, John Banfill became the first settler in the area, which was known at the time as Manomin. Manomin is a variant spelling of manoomin, the Ojibwe word for wild rice, a staple of their diet. It comprised the modern-day municipalities of Columbia Heights, Fridley, Hilltop, and Spring Lake Park.

The area soon grew quickly in size. In 1851, Banfill platted the actual town of Manomin. There, a general store and sawmill were built next to the Rice Creek, named after Henry Mower Rice, a settler who just two years earlier had acquired a lot of land in the area. In 1853, the town got its first post office, and a year later, a ferry crossing the Mississippi River was established.

In 1855, Abram Fridley, for whom the city is named, was elected as the first territorial representative for the area.

In 1857, the area separated from Ramsey County; Manomin County was established, and it became the smallest county in the United States, having only 18 sections. This distinction was short lived, after it was annexed by Anoka County in 1870 and became a township with the same name.

In 1879, the Minnesota State Legislature, of which Abram M. Fridley was still a member, changed the township's name to bear his last name.

In 1949, the village of Fridley was incorporated. The Fridley Free Press was also established. A lawsuit that challenged the incorporation of the village caused the funds to be frozen. Minnesota state law allowed cities to operate municipal liquor stores. The Fridley Liquor store proceeds were the primary funding for the daily city operations until the lawsuit was resolved in 1950.

In 1957, the village became a "home rule charter city".

On May 6, 1965, Fridley was hit by two F4 tornadoes. One out of every four homes in the city was destroyed or damaged. The second twister that hit was the deadliest storm in Twin Cities history (see 1965 Twin Cities tornado outbreak), which killed a total of 13 people. [3]

In 1970, Fridley began purchasing land which would become the Springbrook Nature Center.

On July 18, 1986, a widely photographed tornado spent 16 minutes in Springbrook Nature Center, destroying thousands of century old trees and extensive areas of mature forest habitat. A KARE 11 television news helicopter passing through the area shot the first aerial video of a tornado.

Medtronic World Headquarters is a major employer in Fridley.

On September 21, 2005, Fridley was struck by straight-line winds exceeding 80MPH, toppling many old growth trees as large as 2.5 feet in diameter and in turn, destroying dozens of homes and several vehicles. Cleanup efforts took as long as a week, leaving hundreds of residents stranded in their homes without power, unable to drive until streets were cleared of debris. This same storm also affected Brooklyn Center, New Brighton, Brooklyn Park, and Blaine, as well as other communities in the surrounding North Metro area.

Fridley has one of the first six stations of the Northstar Commuter Rail line connecting the northwest suburbs and downtown Minneapolis; the line opened in November 2009.[4]

Geography and Climate

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.9 square miles (28.2 km²), of which, 10.2 square miles (26.3 km²) of it is land and 0.7 square miles (1.9 km²) of it (6.70%) is water.

City lakes include East Moore Lake, West Moore Lake, and Locke Lake. Rice Creek flows through the central part of the city,[5] Springbrook Creek flows through the northwest section, and the Mississippi River borders Fridley to the west.

It borders the cities of Coon Rapids and Blaine to the north; Spring Lake Park to the northeast; Mounds View and New Brighton to the east; Columbia Heights to the southeast; Minneapolis to the southwest; and Brooklyn Park and Brooklyn Center to the west.

Fridley shares the Climate of the Twin Cities and Climate of Minnesota.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 27,449 people, 11,328 households, and 7,317 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,701.3 people per square mile (1,043.1/km²). There were 11,504 housing units at an average density of 1,132.1/sq mi (437.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 88.65% White, 3.42% African American, 0.82% Native American, 2.89% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 1.23% from other races, and 2.93% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.56% of the population.

There were 11,328 households out of which 28.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.6% were married couples living together, 11.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.4% were non-families. 26.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.91.

In the city the population was spread out with 22.5% under the age of 18, 10.2% from 18 to 24, 31.0% from 25 to 44, 24.4% from 45 to 64, and 12.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 97.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.7 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $48,372, and the median income for a family was $55,381. Males had a median income of $38,100 versus $29,997 for females. The per capita income for the city was $23,022. About 5.3% of families and 7.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.9% of those under age 18 and 3.3% of those age 65 or over.


Fridley is located in Minnesota's 5th congressional district, represented by Minneapolis lawyer Keith Ellison, a Democrat. Ellison is the first Muslim to be elected to the United States Congress. Scott Lund is the current Mayor, first elected in 2000.

Parks and Recreation

Fridley is home to the 127 acre Springbrook Nature Center park and nature reserve on its Northern border with Coon Rapids. The Western border of Fridley comprises the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. Portions of islands within the recreation area are in the Fridley city limits.

Fridley has the following Anoka County parks within the city

  • Manomin County Park (Rice Creek where it enters the Mississippi river and Locke Lake)
  • Rice Creek West/Locke Park and Regional Trail (Rice Creek)
  • Islands of Peace County Park (Mississippi River)
  • Anoka County Riverfront Regional Park (Mississippi River)

The Mississippi River regional trail for pedestrians and bicyclists, which is a paved trail with some street running, passes through Fridley.


Magnum Research, one of several major companies headquartered in Fridley, designs firearms.

Fridley is home to The World Headquarters of Medtronic Inc., and its major employers include BAE Systems (formerly United Defense); Cummins; Unity Medical Center, part of the Allina Healthcare system; Minco Products, Inc; Kurt Manufacturing Company; and Park Construction Company. Magnum Research, the company that produces the Desert Eagle firearm, is also located in Fridley. Both Minneapolis and St. Paul draw their municipal water supplies from the Mississippi River at Fridley.


The public schools in Fridley are governed by Fridley Independent School District 14. Fridley High School, Fridley Middle School, and two elementary schools (Hayes Elementary and Stevenson Elementary) comprise the district. Totino-Grace High School, a private Roman Catholic high school, Calvin Christian High School, a private Christian high school, and Al-Amal School, a private Islamic K-12 school, are also located in Fridley. A small portion of the northern part of Fridley lies in the Anoka-Hennepin School District 11. Students living in an area of eastern Fridley are in the Columbia Heights School District 13.


Interstate 694 and Minnesota State Highways 47 and 65 are three of the main arterial routes in the city.

The BNSF Railway main transcontinental Twin Cities to Portland/Seattle double track line passes through Fridley. The Amtrak Empire Builder passes through Fridley twice daily on this line, but does not stop within the city. The massive BNSF Northtown Classification Yards are located in the city. The Minnesota Commercial Railway also serves Fridley, with a Terminal warehouse located there.

The Fridley Station is served by the Northstar Commuter Rail line running on the BNSF tracks into Minneapolis.

The Mississippi River is not navigable for barge traffic north of the Camden Bridge, however small boats can travel upstream to the Coon Rapids dam without a portage. There is a boat landing for small boats in the river near Interstate 694.


Fridley has the nickname "Friendly Fridley".[6][7] The nickname was spread further by a long running series of advertisements on various radio stations for a local car dealer. The announcer would direct people to "Friendly Chevrolet up in Friendly Fridley".

The city festival is called "49'er" days, which commemorates the 1949 incorporation. It is usually held in mid June.

Sister city


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  3. ^ Summary of May 6, 1965 Tornado Outbreak - NWS Twin Cities
  4. ^ Paul Levy, Northstar set to roll, but how far?, Star Tribune, December 11, 2007.
  5. ^ King's Twin Cities Metro Street Atlas '04. Minneapolis: The Lawrence Group. 2004. ISBN 1-58301-215-X.
  6. ^ Spotlight on Fridley; `Friendly' Minneapolis suburb mostly has ramblers, split-level homes. Star Tribune Homes Section (Minneapolis, Minnesota). November 23, 1996. Jim Buchta
  7. ^ City of Fridley Community Development Comprehensive Plan Chapter 1 preface (PDF)

External links

Coordinates: 45°05′10″N 93°15′48″W / 45.08611°N 93.26333°W / 45.08611; -93.26333



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