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MPR News

Map: In the Twin Cities, where you call home can say a lot about how long you may live

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The color of your skin can say a lot -- statistically, at least -- about how long you should expect to live. Where you call home is important as well. Those two are intertwined, as MPR News' Lorna Benson reported last week:

"Where you live really does affect your health," said Paul Mattessich, executive director of Wilder Research, which pulled together life expectancy data for the health department using Twin Cities death records and zip codes.

"The length of time that people lived really did depend on the neighborhood where they lived," Mattessich said. "If you drive along I-94, go from neighborhood to neighborhood, it can mean a difference of six to eight years."

Here's Wilder's data placed in an interactive map so you can zoom in see exactly what Mattessich was talking about on the neighborhood level. The darker the area, the shorter the life expectancy; the lighter, the longer the life expectancy.

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Special thanks to Melanie Ferris and Jane Tigan of Wilder Research for their help wrangling the data, which is from "The Unequal Distribution of Health in the Twin Cities," prepared by Wilder Research and commissioned by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation.

*A census tract with an asterisk means the life expectancy estimate was calculated with a nearby tract because of low populations in the tract.