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Moving to & Living in Northwest Heights

Northwest Heights Neighborhood Guide 🏢| What to Know About Living in Northwest Heights Portland

Last Updated on: 13th September 2023, 09:58 am

Thinking of relocating to a picturesque neighborhood with a mix of suburban serenity and urban convenience? Consider moving to Northwest Heights, a popular area in Portland, Oregon, that offers natural beauty and easy access to downtown. Northwest Heights is known for its abundant green space and proximity to the massive Forest Park. With affordable, mid-sized homes, quiet, well-maintained streets, and excellent schools, Northwest Heights is a nice place to live for families and young professionals. Here is an in depth look at living in Northwest Heights, Portland.

Where Is Northwest Heights, Portland

Northwest Heights is in northwest Portland, one of the city’s most desirable sections. It’s bordered by Forest Park and Hillside to the west, Goose Hollow to the south, the Pearl District to the east, and Linnton to the North. Downtown Portland is only about 8 miles away, or a 17-minute drive. The Northwest Heights Portland zip code is 97229.

Northwest Heights is known for its abundance of parks and green space, including Mill Pond Park, Boulder Creek Natural Area, Forest Heights City Park, and the 5,200-acre Forest Park, which runs adjacent to the neighborhood and is one of the best parks in Portland. NW Miller Road and NW Skyline Boulevard offer easy access to nearby highways, such as US 26 or US Route 30. For public transportation, Portland’s TriMet Bus Services is also accessible to Northwest Heights residents and makes stops all over the city.

Map of Northwest Heights, Portland

Northwest Heights History & Overview

Northwest Portland was first developed in the 1850s by a sea captain named John Couch, who claimed a plot of undeveloped land in the area. Development increased in the 1870s and 80s as Portland transformed from a small trading village into the major commercial hub of the Pacific Northwest thanks to a railway construction boom, and there was a greater need for residential housing outside of downtown.

The area transformed in 1905 after the Lewis & Clark Exposition shined a spotlight in Portland, and there was an influx of new residents looking for homes in the northwest district. While other neighborhoods saw an influx of duplexes and apartment buildings to accommodate new residents looking for affordable housing, Northwest Heights remained primarily an affluent community of single-family homes. Today, Northwest Heights is a peaceful, family-oriented neighborhood in a prime location.

Northwest Heights, Portland, Oregon demographics

  • Northwest Heights population: 6,030
  • Median household income in Northwest Heights, Portland: $139,800
  • Educational attainment: 98.3% of residents have at least a high school diploma, 77.2% of residents have a bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Median age:  43.3
  • Foreign-born population: 21%
  • Racial and ethnic composition: 74.6% White (71.5% white, non-Hispanic), 14.2% Asian, 3.1% Hispanic, 1% Black or African American, 6% two or more races.

What It’s Like Living in Northwest Heights, Portland

Northwest Heights is a secluded, residential neighborhood with easy access to Portland’s best attractions. Positioned atop a series of hills, the community offers breathtaking skyline views and separation from downtown Portland’s hustle and bustle. However, it’s still only a 5-10 minute drive from some of Portland’s hippest neighborhoods like the Pearl District and Nob Hill.

Northwest Heights offers a suburban ambiance within a major metropolitan area. You’ll find homes in a range of architectural styles on lush, well-maintained streets. It’s an affluent, family-oriented community with low crime and good schools. Although it also has plenty to offer young professionals who want to be close to all the bars, restaurants, and nightlife but don’t need to be in the middle of the action. You’ll also find plenty of parks and green spaces that are great for kids and pets to exercise and play.

You’ll find plenty of sidewalks and walking paths that make it an easy neighborhood to navigate, although you’ll likely need a car to get around. Northwest Heights does not have the same reputation for being as hip and quirky as other parts of Portland and tends to attract more older homeowners and families looking for peace and nature. However, the community has plenty to offer residents from all walks of life searching for peace and quiet with easy access to amenities.

Things to Do in Northwest Heights – Best Restaurants, Attractions & Shopping

Moving to Northwest Heights offers a wide variety of attractions close by. While there are fewer shops and restaurants than in other nearby neighborhoods, you’ll still find plenty of fun things to do in Northwest Heights, from parks to amazing local restaurants. For shopping, residents should check out the Natural Market Convenience Store for fresh produce, organic food, and a large selection of wines. You’ll also find plenty of other retailers at nearby shopping centers like the Cedar Hills Shopping Center, Bethany Village, or Sunset Mall.

Although Northwest Heights has unique culinary options compared to adjacent areas, you will find a few local hot spots. Skyline Restaurant is a classic roadside burger joint and one of the oldest restaurants in Portland that has been serving burgers and milkshakes since 1935. If you’re in the mood for Italian, Pizzicato Pizza is an eatery serving pies, paninis, and salads in a casual setting. Heroes Cafe on NW Miller Road is another great local watering hole serving classic American fare like pulled pork sandwiches and Pastrami subs with a full bar and outdoor patio.



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Forest Park is one of the best local attractions if you’re looking for kids’ activities near Northwest Heights, Portland. With 5,200 acres of preserved woodlands, it’s one of the largest urban parks in the country and features over 80 miles of trails that are ideal for Northwest Heights hikes in Portland. The Cedar Mill Farmers Market is another great family-friendly activity near Northwest Heights that runs from 9 am – 2 pm every Saturday. For more action and adventure, you can head into the Northwest District, which offers more restaurants and entertainment venues.

Here’s where you’ll find the best Northwest Heights attractions and activities:

Schools in Northwest Heights

Moving to Northwest Heights means students will attend schools in the well-respected Portland Public School System, which ranks above average for a major urban area. The district enrolls just under 47,000 students, making it the largest district in Oregon, and features an average student-to-teacher ratio of 17:1 and a graduation rate of 85%. The schools that serve Northwest Heights include Forest Park Elementary School for K-5, West Sylvan Middle School for grades 5-8, and Lincoln High School for grades 9-12.

According to US News and World Report, Forest Park Elementary has a 98/100 rating, making it the 8th best elementary school in Oregon. Lincoln High School also ranks 12th in the state and within the top 2000 high schools nationwide.

While none are in the neighborhood, there are a few Portland private schools close by that are open to students living in Northwest Heights, Portland, including the Montessori School of Beaverton, the French International School of Oregon, and St. Pius X School.

Is Northwest Heights Safe?

Northwest Heights is a very safe community isolated from much foot traffic and densely populated areas that tend to attract high crime. The total crime rate in all of Northwest Portland is 2,501 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is 7% higher than the national average but 86% lower than the rest of Portland.

The violent crime rate is also much lower at 248 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is 36% lower than the national average and 97% lower than the citywide average. Property crime is higher at 2,252 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is 15% higher than the national average but still 84% lower than the rest of Portland.

Exact crime data is not available for Northwest Heights specifically, as it’s a small, secluded neighborhood. However, most crime in northwest Portland tends to be concentrated in the areas closer to downtown. Plus, it’s still a safer community than the rest of the city.

Northwest Heights, Portland Real Estate

The Northwest Portland, Oregon, real estate market is highly in demand due to the high quality of life it offers residents. Northwest Heights Portland housing offers many different architectural styles, from Mid-Century Modern to bungalows to Cape Cod and everything in between.

Redfin states that the median listing price of homes for sale in Northwest Heights, Portland, is $835,000, which is 39% higher than the citywide median. The median price per square foot is $311.

Single-family homes make up the majority of Northwest Heights Portland housing. However, you will still find plenty of Northwest Heights homes for rent. According to RentCafe, the average Northwest Heights Portland rent is $1845 per month. But if you are looking for a multi-family building, the Sofi at Forest Heights on NW Miller Road offers modern Northwest Heights Portland apartments, starting at $1950 for a 2-bedroom.

Ready to relocate to this idyllic Portland neighborhood? Trust our Northwest Heights movers to make your move easy and stress-free. Call 503-746-8795 today for a free, customized moving estimate.



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