6.4 out of 10

Broadview Bitter Lake

Ranked 49th best neighborhood in Seattle
47.7194606202371 -122.356747662605
Great for
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Internet Access
  • Clean & Green
  • Resale or Rental Value
  • Neighborly Spirit
Not great for
  • Parking
  • Pest Free
  •  
  •  
  •  
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Retirees
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Country Lovers

Reviews

5/5 rating details
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
Feb 10, 2016

"Wonderful beach park"

Carkeek park in Broadview is one of our favorite parks. It’s very quiet, and there are not too many tourists. We often come here for picnics in the summer. Once we also used one of the barbeques, with charcoal.

There is a nice playground, but check to make sure it is clean first. It is shaped like a salmon and also has a slide and swings. We also like to stand on the bridge and watch the train go underneath. And there are lots of walking trails that are acceptable for all ages, and also for wheelchairs or strollers.

The most fun is the ocean. You should wear water shoes, so the rocks don’t hurt your feet, and you can wade in the water. The Olympic Mountains can be seen across Puget Sound on clear days.

One time there were some musicians playing here before sunset. Very nice.

Also, there is the environmental learning center, which sometimes has events. You can volunteer here to keep the park clean, which is a good lesson for children. There are some picnic shelters you can rent, we are thinking to do this for a birthday party.

The only bad part is the parking is sometimes full on the weekend afternoons in the summer.

Sometimes we eat at Yang’s Noodles on the way, which I recommend. Some of the dishes are very good, others not so good. But once you find the ones you like it is a good place. It is on Aurora and 145th.
Pros
  • Family-friendly
  • Great parks
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
2yrs+

"An Oasis of Peace in a City of Noise"

When you think of Seattle you think thriving nightlife, exciting action and the movie Singles, but Broadview Bitter Lake is none of those assumptions – it a quiet suburb with a community vibe and little to do outside of working on your yard or having BBQ’s in the back. That’s not to say that the area isn’t quite lovely it’s just not a Mecca for those who want fast pasted action and a big city feel.

Contributing to the low key lifestyle reflected in the area is the recreational area known as Llandover Woods which is a massive green space spanning 9.1 acres where nature enthusiast can really get out into the forest without having to travel to the Olympics or travel across the Deception Pass Bridge. The area is relatively unspoiled and is great for wildlife watching if you’re a birder or if you just like to get away for the city and enjoy the outdoors.

There are a few locally owned eateries but the area is really a residential one and to really dine in style one would have to venture away for this oasis.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Cute, Outdoorsy, Secluded"

A nice little area with a good portion of character without a lot of commerce, the Bitterlake area is generally quiet, clean, and a nice place for families. The residents contribute a lot to community spirit, which is good because it’s an area that can otherwise be overlooked in the spectrum of Seattle neighborhoods. Housing options have space and character, mostly single-family homes with open floor plans, mostly midcentury homes, some with additions like a working garden or a shed to do greasy, dirty jobs in.

The area is out of the way of the nightlife and workplace alike for a lot of younger people, and though it’s situated close to Aurora and accessible to Seattle as such, that highway is really the only lifeline. On average, there are mostly older families here who don’t want to give up their quiet little paradise, which contributes to a low turnover for dwellings. And though it’s a low key, relaxed community that fancies itself out of the way, it’s not small by any means.

The activity is maybe a little sparse, if you’re not outdoorsy. There are definitely a couple of retail shops and outlets, but the main attraction is probably Llandover Woods, a 9-acre open space that’s an attraction for people who like to hike, bird watch, or make a little money by foraging for mushrooms.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Even With The Amusement Park Gone, Bitter Lake Still Can Thrill"

Clinging to the northern edge of Seattle, along with the Haller Lake (http://bitly.com/fkwG2n) and Olympic Hills (http://bit.ly/fAZrbV) neighborhoods, Broadview/Bitter Lake have no less claim to the Emerald City. Packaged neatly in an area encompassing N 145th Street, Interstate 5, N 120th Street and Puget Sound—much land, structure and human diversity can be explored.

History

If you were to ask a senior citizen from Bitter Lake what life was like as a child, they would render stories of "Playland" (http://bitly.com/fgRIbv), an amusement park enjoyed by many until 1961. They may also mention the saw mill that used to run at the southwest end of the lake, which was used to process the lumber being mowed down during the development boom of the late 1800s. In fact, some of the trees felled were up to eight feet in diameter! The Interurban trolley line (http://bitly.com/fBRPzo), connecting Seattle and Everett was constructed—with part of the line running directly past Playland. Farmland and the eventual establishment of Greenwood Avenue, complete with small businesses followed hand-in-hand with population growth. For more specific history details, visit the Historylink (http://bitly.com/dQQzxL).

Demographics and Income

The population spectrum, when it comes to race, places Broadview/Bitter Lake firmly in the White category. However, within Bitter Lake, there is a growing Hispanic, Asian and Black representation. Income levels per household follow a east to west trajectory, with the more affluent living near the coast and the low income families settling around the Lake property. In fact, the median household income is nearly $14,000 larger in Broadview than it is in Bitter Lake. Roughly 40-50% of residents are married, with about 20% raising kids at home. A fairly even spread of ages, with the exception of big retiree numbers.

Culture

The environmental vibe in the Bitter Lake/Broadview area changes drastically from east to west. The eastern side (Bitter Lake) is fast-paced, commercial, crowded and noisy. The western side (Broadview) is highly residential, wooded, sparsely populated, and adorned with natural beauty. Such a stark contrast is rare within Seattle, having most plots of land built-up besides city parks.

Real Estate

The more serene housing lies to the east of Greenwood Avenue (known as Broadview), especially beyond 3rd Avenue. The north/northwest portion is more upscale, with homes near the Seattle Golf and Country Club (http://seattlegolfclub.com). Further southwest, the topography intensifies and gives way to residences eagerly announcing the arrival of a Seattle gem, Carkeek Park (http://bitly.com/dOk2ux). Broadview homes tend to be larger and more expensive than the homes in Bitter Lake, with 86% of dwellings being single family homes compared to Bitter Lake’s 55% representation. The median home size is 1,235 sq. ft. and 1,920 sq. ft. for Bitter Lake and Broadview, respectively. Broadview’s median home value is also about $100,000 higher at $380,200.

Local Business Tour (Restaurants, Pubs, Coffee Houses and other Amenities)

Being a North Seattle suburb is not complete without having one of your borders along Aurora Avenue (otherwise known as Highway 99). There are more small businesses along this highway than fish in Puget Sound. Some samplings of these businesses are: Super Supplements (http://supersup.com) - Any enhancing product for health and well-being can be found here; Kidd Valley Hamburgers and Shakes (http://kiddvalley.com) - Annually serving over 800,000 burgers at eight stores around Western Washington; Sushiyu Japanese Restaurant & Bar (http://sushiyuseattle.com) - Only place for great sushi, nabe and Shabu-shabu; Super Stereo Warehouse (http://superstereowarehouse.com) - A gigantic warehouse selling all the major brand names in car stereo equipment; European Foods (http://eurofoodseattle.com) - Eastern European Groceries; and Pho of Aurora (http://bitly.com/gXdh70) - Serving a mean vegetarian bowl. Greenwood Avenue (on the West side of Bitter lake) is Aurora's close rival with many shops of its own. Some of which include: Chef at Wok (http://chefatwok.com) - East Coast style Chinese Cuisine; La Casa Azul (http://lacasaazulrestaurant.com) - Authentic, homemade cuisine from Mexico City and surrounding states; Teriyaki Time (http://bitly.com/ifizOZ) - Large portions of standard teriyaki fare; and The Cellar Homebrew (http://cellar-homebrew.com) - Turning out a variety of beers, wine products, cider and more.

Accommodations

Overnight stay options consist of hotels on Aurora. Recommended places are: Holiday Inn Express (http://bitly.com/hA0Wmq) - South of 145th Street and Aurora Avenue intersection, featuring a ‘Going Green’ package for those refusing housekeeping services; Comfort Inn & Suites (http://bitly.com/eCY3Dr) - Near N 137th Street and Aurora; and Extended StayAmerica (http://bitly.com/gFrMap) - Fully equipped kitchens and plenty of work space for business travelers.

Schools and Recreation Facilities

Today, children still flock to the south side of the water. However, instead of riding on a roller coaster or floating through Venice-like canals, they enjoy a modern playground and an indoor swim complex (http://bitly.com/dJNzI6). Summer months draw families to utilize the unique outdoor wading pool adjacent to the playground. This urban lake, interestingly, has attracted the construction of retirement complexes. These structures, along with apartments and residential homes surround virtually every square foot of the lake not occupied by the park.

Carkeek (http://bit.ly/dOk2ux) is an experience from the entrance gate. A gorgeous, winding road descends from 3rd Avenue towards the grounds. You sit amazed at the abrupt change from the bustling businesses just up the hill. This park has entertainment for all. Green space is abundant, the kids will love the multiple structures in the play area (including a fish they can slide down). There are generous trails to hike and, of course, the beach! Amtrak (http://amtrakcascades) and freight trains also frequent the coast via the rail that passes below a pedestrian bridge. It's a mad dash to get a good view of the train cars when the locomotive is spotted miles away.

The schools poised to serve include: Broadview-Thomson (http://seattleschools.org/schools/broadview) - Educating students, K-8, to be productive and lifelong learners and Alpha Montessori (http://alphastarmontessori.com) - Focusing on the entire child—the physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth.

Access

Linden Avenue, which is the access road to the lake, has seen improvement in the last three years due to senior housing construction. The road has been made more biker-friendly to provide a more streamlined ride from Shoreline into Bitter Lake. The bike route firms up after crossing 130th Street and continues south on Linden. A recently constructed path runs parallel to the Washelli-Evergreen Cemetery and ends abruptly at 110th Street. The path is lined with eye-catching art (remember those comics that could be watched by flipping pages?).

Summary

Bitter Lake/Broadview is a Seattle neighborhood that can easily be overlooked. It is a place that must be experienced slowly and consistently. As you gain a feel for this community, it becomes clear that there is not much about which to be bitter.
Pros
  • Quiet environment
  • Good accommodations for seniors
  • Great parks
  • Family-friendly
Cons
  • High traffic volumes on arterial streets
  • More expensive housing
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Country Lovers
2/5 rating details
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
2yrs+

"Nice area...for the north side"

The Broadview neighborhood offers some terrific areas to live, and some not-so-great areas. On the north, south and west side of the Broadview neighborhood, you'll find some pristine, gorgeous homes with views of Puget Sound or the seclusion of huge, dense trees. Carkeek Park, arguably one of Seattle's best Parks, is just to the south of Broadview, giving residents public access to the beach, great family picnic and play areas and tons of hiking trails. North-end residents receive the quiet peacefulness of a forest-like setting with the Seattle Country Club in their backyards. And west-side residents, while they don't have access to the best beaches in Seattle for swimming, playing or fishing, do get that fresh ocean wind coming off of the sound.

The east side does provide quick access to the shops, restaurants and local businesses along Hwy 99/Aurora Ave., however they also have the traffic, noise and unpleasant aspects of the area to go along with it. Home prices in the entire Broadview neighborhood are quite expensive, regardless of the area you live in, ranging from the high $400s to $1-$2 million. There are some nice homes around Bitter Lake with docks and lake access, which are slightly more secluded than the rest of the east-siders, though traffic getting out of the area can be a bear sometimes and commuting the 5-6 miles to downtown Seattle can take upwards of 30-40 minutes during rush hour.
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
2yrs+

"Quiet and Affordable Neighborhood With Parks and Trails"

Broadview and Bitter Like are located on the northwestern edge of the city of Seattle. The two neighborhoods are separated by Greenwood Avenue, with Broadview to the North and Bitter Lake to the South. The southern boundary of Bitter Lake is North 105th Street, and the eastern boundary is Aurora Avenue North. Directly to the north, above NW 145th Street, lies the city of Shoreline.

Though a little rough around the edges, many residents love this area of the city for offering an ideal combination of everything, from cheap apartments to modest homes to mansions. Although some areas just off Aurora, a main thoroughfare through the area, have been noted as being a bit dangerous after dark, most of the Broadview/Bitter Lake area is a great place to raise children.

Broadview is also home to some of the best parks in the city, including Carkeek Park, located on Puget Sound along the western edge of the neighborhood. The Interurban biking trail also runs through the neighborhood, offering ample opportunity for biking, jogging, and rollerblading. Llandover Trail is known for its many native plant and animal species, making it a fun weekend walk, especially for those with kids. The Bitter Lake neighborhood is named after Bitter Lake, one of the most popular recreational areas of the district, while Broadview is home to the E.B. Dunn historic gardens.

The Seattle to Everett Interurban trolley line once ran through the heart of the neighborhood, hastening its development in the early twentieth century. From 1930 until the early 1960s, Bitter Lake was home to Playland, a large amusement park. Today, the site is home to R.H. Thomson Elementary School and the Bitter Lake Community Center.

Although some residents lament the lack of trendy dining or nightlife options compared to other areas of Seattle, in fact Broadview and Bitter Lake is a quiet and comfortable neighborhood drawing residents young and old thanks to its relatively low real estate prices and abundance of outdoor activities.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
2yrs+

"An excellent affordable neighborhood!"

The Broadview/Bitter Lake neighborhood is well outside of the more popular neighborhoods in Seattle. It's a little rough around the edges, such as lacking some basic necessities as sidewalks, but it offers a little bit of everything. It has a mix of modest homes, mansions, cheap apartments, and senior citizen assisted care facilities. Broadview is home to some wonderful parks, including Carkeek Park, which occupies the western border of the neighborhood along Puget Sound. The recently redone Interurban bike trail segment provides a nice opportunity for running, biking, and rollerblading. A key weakness of Broadview and Bitter Lake is the relative lack of upscale dining and entertainment options compared to other more trendy neighborhoods in Seattle.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees

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Best Streets in Broadview Bitter Lake

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47.7218013320753 -122.350342363858
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47.7219900363938 -122.356886580534

Unranked Streets in Broadview Bitter Lake

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"A decent back street"
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"A bit busy, but great access to almost anything"
47.7242989968858 -122.355549017124
"Infected by nearby Aurora Avenue"
47.7219548357889 -122.348372703696

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