City living in a Park-Rich Setting
740 River Drive is right on the Mississippi River Boulevard, a scenic road that follows the river from St. Paul to Minneapolis and offers many beautiful vistas, whether you are driving, or biking or walking along the pedestrian and bicycle paths that run along it.
740 River Drive overlooks the Mississippi Gorge, and several outstanding parks are at its doorstep. The Gorge is a unique six-mile stretch of the Mississippi where the river has carved a deep valley with steep limestone bluffs, natural springs and hardwood forests. The Gorge is a true ecological treasure: 30 native fish species thrive in its waters, and it is used as a migration corridor by about 100 species of birds, including 40% of the North American Migratory waterfowl. It is surrounded by native ecosystems of rare mesic oak savanna and other deciduous hardwood forests, and by prairie meadows. The Mississippi Gorge Regional Park, which stretches along the east bank of the river from the University of Minnesota to the Ford Parkway bridge, is at the front door of 740 River Drive. Moreover, the land along both sides of the river forms the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, a “corridor” park, 72 miles long, that runs through Minneapolis and St. Paul. It has preserved woodlands and other natural river habitats, and offers many peaceful opportunities for fishing, boating and canoeing.
740 River Drive is within half a mile from both Hidden Falls Regional Park and the 193-acre Minnehaha Park, with its spectacular views of the Mississippi limestone bluffs and the Minnehaha waterfall. Hidden Falls Regional Park lies between the Mississippi River Boulevard and the river. It has a beautiful wilderness setting with shady wooded bottomlands next to the Mississippi, and magnificent views. The Hidden Falls stream is at the north end, and limestone and sandstone outcrops are on the east side. The park has several miles of trails for walking, running or bicycling, sandy shorelines, a boat launching area, fishing spots, and pleasant picnic areas. It is an excellent place to observe birds: great horned, barred and eastern screech owls nest in the park, and peregrine falcons nest just north of the park. Thrushes and warblers are easily observed during the migration season. Minnehaha Park is in front of 740 River Drive, across the Ford Parkway bridge. It overlooks the river, and offers many scenic views, including of beautiful limestone bluffs and a 53-foot waterfall. The park has areas of native and prairie woodland wildflowers; much of its surface is covered with mature woods, which make it especially beautiful in the fall. It has scenic bike and pedestrian trails, picnic areas, a fresh seafood restaurant, a Frisbee golf course, and a wading pool. It also has several sculptures by noted artists. Many summer activities take place in the park, including open-air concerts at a public pavilion.
Scenic off-road paths run on both sides of the Mississippi. Some follow the river from atop the bluffs; others wind down through the Gorge, reaching the river and beautiful quiet beaches. This trail system is excellent for walking, bicycling and hiking, and leads to wonderful spots for bird watching.
The Residents of 740 River Drive have at their doorstep a most extensive and scenic network of walking, jogging and running paths–surrounded by mature trees and with outstanding views of the river. The bicycle lane that runs along the river is at the 740 River Drive front door, connecting to the extensive Twin Cities bikeway system, one of the best in the country.
Highland Park, the park from which this neighborhood takes its name, offers both 18-hole and nine-hole golf courses, and a number of tennis courts and other sport courts. It has a lovely park setting in the midst of this established residential neighborhood.