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Are you considering a move to Spokane? If so, you might have a lot of questions about Spokane neighborhoods. In this Spokane neighborhood summary, we’re focusing on Northside Spokane neighborhoods.
Looking for more neighborhood analysis? Stay tuned – we’re going to be adding more Spokane neighborhood write ups soon!
Check out our latest Spokane neighborhood write ups here:
What are Spokane’s Best Neighborhoods?
Before we get into the northside Spokane neighborhoods analysis, we wanted to quickly set some expectations: we’re not going to judge what the ‘best’ neighborhood in Spokane is!
Why? Well, we’ve looked at some others ‘best of’ rankings and… we can’t agree with them! Some people think South Hill is ‘the best’, others think Five Mile is ‘the best’ and still others prefer Hillyard, Garland, or West Central.
What we think is ‘the best’ will probably be different from what you think is the best. However, this doesn’t mean we’re only going to give you generic information.
We’ll still point out crime, safety, school, housing price info and the intangibles – what it’s like to live and walk in these neighborhoods. We’ll also get local realtor perspective on the areas we don’t know as well.
We’re Spokane transplants, but that’s not a bad thing. I lived here 10+ years ago for several years, then moved back – and wow has Spokane changed! You definitely can’t compare Spokane of the 1990s-2000s to the Spokane of today – and we’re not going to try to.
We’re going to cover what it’s like living in Spokane right now.
We’ll also cover the history and city council information behind these neighborhoods, but we won’t let past history inform how some Spokane neighborhoods are today.
The best neighborhood in Spokane is the one that’s best for you and your family. Spokane has a variety of neighborhoods at many different price points, with amenities, schools, parks and more. You’ll find something unique and different about every neighborhood.
As a reference, here is the City of Spokane’s official Spokane map:
In this article, we’re focusing on the far north neighborhoods of Spokane, specifically the ones below:
- North Indian Trail
- Five Mile Prairie
- Shiloh Hills
- Balboa-South Indian Trail
Official neighborhoods have their councils, where they can address local needs and concerns. When it comes time to choose a place to live in Spokane, you have a great list from which to select. Here’s a look at a few neighborhoods on the north side of Spokane.
Northside Spokane Neighborhoods
North Indian Trail
Located in the northwest section of Spokane, North Indian Trail includes a beautiful view of the Spokane River Gorge. What started as an area for houses in the 1970s, the now-50-year-old neighborhood welcomes residents who reside in apartments and condos, as well as newer homes.
According to local realtor Angela Foote of Keller Williams,
“North Indian Trail is a quiet community on the edge of Spokane. It’s about a 20 minute drive from downtown, with its own small town shopping center— Starbucks included. The neighborhood here is a mix of well established communities and new developments. It is surrounded by the Little Spokane River Natural Area and Riverside State park, making it easy access to the outdoors. Take a walk up Barnes road hill for pretty sunset views.”
The median age of your neighbors in North Indian Trail is 47 years of age, higher than Spokane’s average of 35. A little more than a third of the homes have children under the age of 18. More than 95 percent of the neighborhood has at least one dog in their residence.
Looking for places to board your dog around Spokane? Read our article on Dog Boarding in Spokane.
With an average sale price of about $355,000, the housing market is robust. North Indian Trail has a median household income of about $81,000, higher than Spokane’s of roughly $45,000.
North Indian Trail is among Spokane’s safest neighborhoods, with a 1 in 66 chance of being a victim of a crime, about 1.5 percent. With petty offenses, such as vandalism, among the primary crime, the neighborhood is considered safer than 83 percent of the country.
The area is part of the Spokane Public School District. While the district’s schools face academic challenges, it has experienced improvement in achievement test schools in recent years. About a third of high school students participate in advanced placement courses, with a 93 percent graduation rate.
We personally currently live (renting) in North Indian Trail and have found it to be incredibly safe. Rents are higher on average than other parts of Spokane, but it is one of the few pet-friendly apartments we have found that offers newer amenities (like air conditioning, which is increasingly becoming a ‘must have’ as Spokane warms up).
It’s not very walkable, in terms of getting groceries or anything else. You’re about 20 minutes from downtown, too, but North Indian Trail did recently get a brand new farmers market, so that’s promising.
Unfortunately, as building continues in North Indian Trail and roads are not expanded to meet demand, traffic is becoming a problem – and dangerous. In a formerly slow, family-friendly community, more people are driving recklessly on one-way streets. It’s unlikely the city will limit growth in this area, but it is also apparent they are not widening the roads to make them safer for both pedestrians and car traffic. This is something to keep in mind if you are moving to anywhere directly off of Indian Trail Rd. itself.
Five Mile Prairie
With a rural vibe, Five Mile Prairie is home to the original settler of the area, John Q. Strong. Having planted roots in 1879, Strong’s homestead is the foundation for the neighborhood. With the country appeal, you forget that the city is just around the bend.
A young neighborhood, Five Mile Prairie has a median age of 39. Primarily home to a white collar community, the average household income is about $78,000.
While the average cost of a new home is about $394,000, families enjoy residing in the Mead Public School District. With a 95 percent graduation rate, high schools students average a 1059 on the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). The district is planning to open Creekside Elementary School beginning with the 2020-21 school year, as well as Highland Middle School.
Located in Five Mile, northwest of Spokane, Five Mile Prairie is a among the safest neighborhoods in the area, where people enjoy taking nightly strolls.
When considering the difference between Five Mile and North Indian Trail, local realtor Corrie Jo Anderson of Winderemere says:
“They all have their own unique attributes and feel; for example Five Mile Prairie has a lot of new homes built within the last 20 years with a spattering of beautiful quaint original farm houses on large lots. It also has gorgeous mansion style homes over looking the city on the bluff. Whereas Indian Trail has a 70’s home sort of feel. A lot of rancher style homes (one level) with a newer homes built in several portions of the community.”
Living down the hill from Five Mile Prairie, we’ve been able to visit Five Mile and its long, easy, flat walking paths for a while now. Sidewalks are a hit or miss on Five Mile – some of the newer areas have wide streets and sidewalks, but many areas don’t. Be extremely careful if walking, running or biking with young children.
The local park, Sky Prairie Park, however is absolutely gorgeous. It’s a huge park, with plenty of playground space, picnic tables, sidewalks and rolling hills for people of all ages to walk, jog, and play.
If you’re interested in learning more about Five Mile Prairie, keep an eye out for Prairie Living Magazine. It’s a local magazine that only goes out to those on Five Mile, but you can learn more about the magazine here.
A new neighborhood, Shiloh Hills stands where not long ago country fields filled the landscape. The area developed over the past four decades, and eventually was created in 2016 as an offshoot from the Nevada-Lidgerwood area.
With retail shops and apartment complexes growing from those old country fields, the northeast Spokane neighborhood has an average home price of about $200,000.
The neighborhood is among the city’s least-safe areas, which has been addressed during neighborhood council meetings. As night falls, some people congregate in parks, which increases likelihood for criminal acts, mostly property and petty crimes.
As part of the Mead school district, Shiloh Hills students attend some of the best schools in the Spokane area. Shiloh Hills Elementary School receives a 6/10 GreatSchools rating.
Shiloh Hills is close to Division (one the main roads in Spokane) and Highway 2, which puts it close to many major amenities, shopping and more. You’re a close drive to Target, HomeGoods, Costco and many restaurants (most are chain restaurants but a few are locally owned!). While this does mean there is more traffic in this area, having large, open roads and a highway actually means you move around quite quickly.
Balboa-South Indian Trail
Located along a trail used by Native Americans before settlers eventually overtook the land, the Balboa-South Indian Trail neighborhood calls northwest Spokane home. Ponderosa Pine trees, the Spokane River Gorge and more scenic views create a beautiful landscape.
According to local realtor Angela Foote of Keller Williams,
“Balboa-South Indian Trail is like North Indian trail’s older sibling. The streets are quiet with sidewalks throughout and plenty of pine trees to shade you in the summer. The Yoke’s grocery store and gas station serve as a quick stop for necessities. Moose have been known to venture into the streets here and Wyakin Park, the 27 acre natural area, provides easy access to trails and wildlife spotting.”
With a median age of 43, the average home price is about $294,000. According to Nextdoor, 91% of people living in the Balboa-South Indian Trail neighborhood are homeowners.
Balboa-South Indian Trail has an average crime rate, with the typical offense involving petty crimes.
The Balboa-South Indian Trail is located in the Spokane school district.
A post-World War II neighborhood, some may say the Northwest neighborhood is long in the tooth, with little more to offer than a series of ranch style homes and maybe a couple of other designs.
However, being a neighborhood that grew up with the Greatest Generation, Northwest is a reminder that soldiers returning from World War II were coming home to a land of opportunity – new jobs and the chance to own their own home. As you stroll through the neighborhood, consider what the early residents went through in their lives in creating the neighborhood you now call home.
The area is home to Drumheller Springs, a historical park where the first American school was built in the territory. Now a park, the area was along a route traveled by Pacific Northwest Native American tribes.
The classic neighborhood, which is part of the Spokane school district, has a great safety reputation.
The average home price in the Northwest neighborhood is $240,000, according to Zillow.
According to local realtor Corrie Jo Anderson,
“Northwest Spokane has a portion of it that sits on the bluff overlooking the Spokane River is considered a ‘walking neighborhood’; this area is the Audubon/Downriver neighborhood. With the stunningly maintained 27 acre Audubon Park and several delicious affordable restaurants on Northwest Blvd that are within walking distance, this area is highly desirable!
The beautiful Down River golf course is also close by situated right above the Spokane river. The homes that line the streets are very proudly maintained mostly older, early to mid-century Craftsman bungalows and brick Tudors. Dog and kiddo friendly, this is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Spokane!”
Spokane’s history is reflected in its neighborhoods, with architecture designs and street layouts paving the stories. Stay tuned as we cover the rest of Spokane’s vibrant neighborhoods!
Check out our latest Spokane neighborhood write ups here:
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