7.3 out of 10

Redmond

Ranked 6th best city in Washington
47.6755825901671 -122.114579259438
Great for
  • Clean & Green
  • Safe & Sound
  • Eating Out
  • Internet Access
  • Shopping Options
Not great for
  • Nightlife
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Who lives here?
  • Families with kids
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian

Reviews

5/5 rating details
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
Feb 11, 2016

"Bicycle capital of the northwest"

Redmond is my mid-point destination stop when road biking a large loop around Lake Washington. To get there from Seattle, we head north on the Burke Gilman trail, which takes us around the northern tip of Lake Washington. Then, we connect with the Sammamish River trail to Redmond, which drops us off right at the town center for lunch. It is 29 miles from Seattle to Redmond on this route.

For lunch, you are close to Redmond Square and Redmond Town Center (just don’t eat too much… you’ve still got 2-3 hours of biking left!). I’d recommend something high in protein, to support those muscles you’ve been working. For vegetarians, the Haveli Vegetarian Cuisine has passable Indian food, though it tends to be a bit heavy. The Flying Apron Bakery is gluten free and vegan, as a lighter option. You can get takeout and bring your lunch to the park next to Redmond Town Center, near the Sammamish River. Or cross the stream to Marymoor Park. Then take some time to rest, and stretch before you continue.

The second leg is 19 miles. From Redmond you ride south to Bellevue and across the I-90 bridge. This route utilizes the 520 bike trail, the Mountains to Sound Greenway trail, and the I-90 trail. Though unfortunately it also includes some riding on side streets. Surprisingly, it’s quite enjoyable to bike across the I-90 bridge. I expected it to be very noisy and smoggy, but with the fresh breeze coming off the lake, it’s beautiful, especially on a sunny day.

Of course, you can do this in the opposite direction, but I highly recommend doing the longer leg first, so you have enough energy to finish. When you get home you feel very accomplished, and tired.

From the little I’ve seen of Redmond, it looks like a lovely city with a well-designed city center and lots of couples and families. I imagine it would be pleasant to live here, for those that work nearby.
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
Feb 09, 2016

"Good amenities and a price point to match"

Redmond is an upper-class Seattle suburb that has good amenities, and a price point to match. It’s located east of Kirkland and north of Bellevue, just northeast of where highway 405 and 520 meet.

Transportation:
Being a relatively young city, the streets and downtown were designed to be pleasant for walkers, bikers, drivers, and those taking public transit. For bikers, you can get almost anywhere in town on a designated bike lane, or on a path totally separate from the road, which is much safer than most cities. Plus, drivers seem to be relatively aware of bikers, and are courteous. As a bike commuter, that’s not something to take lightly!

The town also caters to the environmentally friendly crowd here by providing elective car charging stations all over town.

For those working in Seattle, Redmond is right at the end of the 520 bridge, which is convenient for getting downtown, but you have to pay a toll to get across Lake Washington. To avoid the toll, you’ll need to drive a couple of miles south to the I-90 bridge. Both options are very slow stop-and-go during rush hour.

One thing Redmond could improve is the park and ride. It’s much too small for the population, which means it’s full by 7:30 am most mornings. Even if more people wanted to take the bus, they’d have a hard time doing that with the full park and ride. However, once you do make it on a bus, the transit system is decent and you can get around quite easily.

Employment
A large percentage of the population works here in town, either at Microsoft (which dwarfs all the other employers) at another tech company or startup, or in the local shops, restaurants, health care centers, and schools. A good percentage of people also commute to Seattle or Bellevue.

Housing:
Surprisingly, most housing in Redmond is just as expensive as prime Seattle neighborhoods. Granted, the housing tends to be newer and in slightly better shape, on average, but still. It could work if you are sharing housing costs with a partner, family, or roommate, but for singles, be prepared for a uncomfortably large chunk of your paycheck to go towards rent. This is exacerbated by the fact that there aren’t many studios.

If you’re looking to buy, many of your options in Redmond currently are condos. Though there are a few single-family homes, these are in very high demand, and hard to come by.

Amenities:
Redmond has plenty of delicious restaurants. You really have every variety you could think of. Prices tend to run on the higher side (are you seeing a trend?).
Unrelated to income, the library is great here. I especially love that they are open late on weekends.

As for shopping, Redmond Town Center has a mix of clothing stores, restaurants, and services like salons and dentists. This is also where you’ll find the iPic theater, which has squishy red recliners, food, and drinks. Of course, it’s more expensive than your typical theater, but it’s fun for a splurge with friends once in awhile. It’s also the only iPic in Washington, though other brands do similar styles. This is the only one that gives you blankets and pillows though! Pretty luxurious. But it can be chilly inside, so bring an extra blanket or sweater if you tend to run cold.

Finally, I’ll mention Marymoor Park. This huge park is a popular concert venue in the summer, with great shows visiting. Just watch out for the traffic before and after the show that slows down hwy 520. When there aren’t shows, it’s a nice place to walk or jog that is close to home, especially if you have dogs!
Pros
  • Quiet
  • Clean
Cons
  • High cost of living
  • Not much nightlife
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Gay & Lesbian
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
Feb 05, 2016

"Microsoft town"

Redmond is Microsoft Headquarters, and that’s the only reason I spend time here. HQ is south of downtown Redmond, not far from Bellevue.

Microsoft really is the giant here. They have so many buildings, and even a museum. I’d say that many, or even most, of the people who live in Redmond work for Microsoft. It’s by far the biggest employer around.

I chose to live in Bellevue instead, which is more my style, and better for a young single person. The reason I don’t live or spend time in Redmond is because it’s mainly for families. It’s not a great place for a single person, because it’s so quiet.

The public transportation is great, probably because so many thousands of Microsoft employees use it. I can easily get to work from Bellevue in 20 minutes, depending on traffic.

I do eat out a lot in Redmond though, The area around Redmond Town Center is really nice. Here are some good ones:

--Tipsy Cow Burger Bar: The meat in the burgers is WAY better than the average hamburger. Also really good milkshakes.
--Taqueria El Gallo: the only authentic-ish (for Washington) Mexican restaurant in Redmond.
--The Stone House: good local food, quiet. Good to catch up with a friend.
Pros
  • Quiet
Cons
  • Not much nightlife
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 5/5
Jan 14, 2016

"Home to Microsoft and great for families"

Redmond is located 16 miles east of Seattle, it’s a quiet suburb with the reputation of being the bicycle capital of the Northwest. The city of Redmond is best known for being home to Microsoft. The Microsoft Campus, located at One Microsoft Way, is over 8 million square feet of office space and is so large it has its own shopping mall called The Redmond Commons. Microsoft employs over 40,000 people in the area, many of which work on the Redmond campus.

Chances are if you’re considering moving to Redmond you’re working at Microsoft or one of the many other tech companies. The city of Redmond is made up of several suburbs and developments, and has a traditional downtown. Because the city caters to tech workers moving in from out of town there are plenty of rental options in large buildings, most with great amenities.

Renting in Redmond is much cheaper than Seattle or Bellevue and offers more square footage for the price. 1 bedrooms start as low $1,173, which is very affordable, and that is for more than 600+ square feet. Buying a home in Redmond is a different story. Residents here have above average income and that reflects in home prices. According to Zillow the average home in Redmond is 611,700, up 8.8% and that trend will continue to rise, the housing market is very hot here. People put a high value in living close to work, as they should considering the terrible traffic in the area, 5th worst in the nation.

Here are a few things to do in Redmond:

Marymore Park – It’s HUGE! 640 acres. They have awesome outdoor concerts here in the summer.

Cycling – The Sammamish Trail connects with the Burke Gilman, which you can ride all the way to Ballard. I recommend pedaling to Woodinville for wine tasting.

More cycling – Velodrome racing at Marymore Park bring in 1,500-2,000 spectators on Friday nights.

Redmond Town Center – An outdoor mall in the Pacific Northwest!

While there aren’t many attractions in Redmond proper, it’s very close to Kirkland, Bellevue, and Seattle.


Who should live in Redmond? Anyone working at Microsoft with a family should consider living here. Family time is very important and living in Redmond avoids the long commute, saving time and stress.

Anyone who is young and single might get bored here. There is a mall and a downtown, but both lack any sort of action at night. Kirkland and Bellevue offer more and are a short commute. On the plus side renting is really affordable compared to Seattle/Bellevue.

What are the downsides to Redmond? If you’re buying it would be the cost of living. Homes in Redmond are even more expensive than some Seattle neighborhoods.
Pros
  • Clean
  • Quiet
  • Affordable Rent
Cons
  • Expensive to Buy
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
Dec 18, 2015

"Top-notch Suburb"

Character
Redmond is a small Seattle suburb that’s North East of Bellevue. Some would say it’s a Bellevue suburb since it’s closer to Bellevue than Seattle. It’s home to Microsoft and Nintendo of America who both hire top talent from all over the world making Redmond an affluent and vibrant cross-cultural city.

Shopping and Restaurants
Redmond has a good selection of shopping and restaurants. Like any Seattle suburb, you’ll find the usual assortment of stores and eateries. Redmond town center has hundreds of shops, restaurants and entertainment venues. If you’re looking for high-end shopping, Bellevue (the shopping capital of Washington state) is just a ten-minute hop away.

There are a ton of restaurants in Redmond, but I haven’t eaten out there. Recently, La Isla, Seattle’s first, and best, Puerto Rican restaurant opened a Redmond location. I’ve eaten at the Ballard location probably hundreds of times. It’s delicious. I also hear good things about Tropea Ristorante Italian, which serves up traditional Italian cuisine and Bai Tong, which makes some of the best Thai in the Seattle metro area.

Housing
Redmond is an affluent area. Many residents have well-paying jobs at Microsoft, Terex or Nintendo of America and own their home. There are a lot of single-family homes with sizable yards and quiet streets with a median home price of around $550,00 in 2015. To accommodate singles and lower-income families, a lot of condo’s and townhomes have been built in and near downtown in the past ten years or so. There are also a lot of homes, condo’s and apartments for rent. Rentals are generally cheaper than in Seattle or Bellevue and you’ll get a lot more space.

Traffic
Traffic in and around Redmond and Bellevue isn’t too bad, but traffic between Seattle and Redmond is terrible. Most everyone I know who lives on the east side of Lake Washington spends most of their time in Redmond, Kirkland, and Bellevue. On an average day, it can take up to two hours to make the 18-mile trip. Redmond to Bellevue is a short 7.5-mile hop which usually takes about 10 minutes unless SR 520 or I-405 are backed up.

Seattle has been taking steps to improve traffic in and around Seattle, but construction seems to cause as much congestion as the traffic. The fastest way between the two cities is the SR 520 bridge, which is tolled in both directions. Seattle’s light rail will eventually go to Redmond, but scheduled completion isn’t until 2023.

Bicycling
Redmond is a bike friendly community are there are tons of off-street bike trails, on-street bike lanes that provide easy access to downtown, neighborhoods, parks and businesses. It is also home to one of the few Velodromes on the west coast.


Parking
Redmond is a typical suburb, so parking is available pretty much everywhere. There are so many bikes in Redmond, the city produces a map of downtown bike parking. There seems to be plenty of places to park your bike near businesses and shops downtown.

Weather
If you haven’t lived in Western Washington, the first winter can be a bit dreary. Don’t worry, you’ll get used to the rain. In November through March, it's chilly and wet with average low temperatures between 35 and 42 degrees Fahrenheit and around 4-5 inches of rain per month. The rain mostly falls slowly and steadily so it’s wet and butty on most days. The summers are pleasant and mild with highs between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit and less rain.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids

Unranked Neighborhoods in Redmond

"Great shopping with excellent parking"
47.6745797447908 -122.122171022877
"Numerous educational facilities in the area"
47.6925861325364 -122.109264948796

Grass Lawn

2.5/5
"Very little commercialization in the area"
47.6696720646935 -122.145758140162
"Residential areas set apart from the rest"
47.709352557409 -122.105190814908

Overlake

3.5/5
"Lakeside homes, but high bank waterfront"
47.6437989778107 -122.120420218441
"Lots of biking trails and parklands"
47.6945636451681 -122.135864501503
"Great suburban atmosphere and away from the city"
47.6632984678883 -122.101532768256

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