St. Paul is the state capital, and the Twin Cities region (Minneapolis–St. Paul) is the major administrative, economic, and cultural hub of Minnesota. To serve Minnesota’s growing agricultural, forestry, and mining activities in the 19th century, a network of towns emerged across the landscape. In the latter half of the 20th century, many of the smaller communities atrophied, while the larger communities expanded over wider areas. The fastest-growing parts of the state in the early 21st century were the Twin Cities region and the St. Cloud and Rochester metropolitan areas.