Photo: Joe Mabel, Creative Commons
In the Eastside Neighborhood Guide we will talk about different neighborhoods like Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Newcastle, Sammamish and Mercer Island which all offer something for everyone from bustling downtown areas to larger suburban communities with plenty of open space. All five cities in the Eastside are close enough to Seattle that you won't need a car once you move here but they still have many amenities on their own such as award-winning libraries (Bellevue), affordable housing options (Mercer Island) or access to world class schools (Kirkland).
Bellevue is the second largest city in Washington and offers a vibrant downtown with major national retailers, top-rated hotels, restaurants serving world class cuisine from around the globe, high tech companies like HTC America headquarters and an award-winning performing arts center. At the same time Bellevue has all the benefits one would expect to find outside of a big city: low crime rates with families living within close proximity to their jobs or schools (it ranks as The Most Livable City in America), easy access to outdoor recreation including skiing on Mt. Baker just 40 miles away, and plenty of open space for residents seeking peace and serenity.
In Redmond you will find Microsoft HQ along with many other technology businesses thriving here while still retaining its small-town charm. There is plenty to do both indoors and outdoors with golf, hiking, biking, fishing, boating on the Sammamish River or exploring downtown Redmond’s vibrant arts scene all within a short distance of each other.
Kirkland offers residents the best of urban living along with access to some breathtaking views from its lakeside location that include Mount Rainier and Lake Washington. Kirkland has an award-winning public library system as well as one of the nation's top-ranked school districts in terms of college readiness which makes it an attractive place for families looking for suburban amenities without sacrificing city style excitement like shopping at Westfield Southcenter Mall; which is ranked among America’s busiest malls or enjoying any number of outdoor recreation activities including a splash pad and parks.
Newcastle is the Eastside’s newest city experiencing rapid growth with many new housing developments being completed due to its proximity to Downtown Seattle (approximately 15 minutes) as well as access to some of the region's best recreation opportunities at Lake Sammamish State Park, Redmond Watershed Forest or Mercer Slough Preserve. Newcastle also offers residents an excellent public library system along with one of Washington’s top-ranked school districts in terms of college readiness making it attractive place for families looking for suburban amenities.
Mercer Island is the smallest city on the Eastside but offers residents an excellent public library system, high quality schools and a downtown area with many shops, restaurants and businesses. This compact community has limited development which is one of its most attractive features as it provides plenty of open spaces for walking or biking to nearby parks such as Mercerdale Park where you can take in panoramic views of Lake Washington while also enjoying a picnic or playing disc golf.
Mercer Island offers residents the best of urban living along with access to some breathtaking views from its lakeside location that include Mount Rainier and Lake Washington.
If you’re looking for a new place to live, consider the Eastside. With all of these advantages and more waiting for you in Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Newcastle or Sammamish it is no wonder that Forbes ranked them among America's top 10 "Best Places To Live."