Originally Posted by MrChills
My wife and I both loath box stores, and to be honest shopping in general (other than the essentials). I would sacrifice size for character and location. We always choose to live somewhere were we can walk to grocery shop, eat and go out and only use our vehicle when really needed. I would prefer someone in "the thick of things", but also with a daughter, safe to walk around, and not to get caught up in media hype, but Edmonton has been in the news for a lot of the wrong reasons this year, and from an outsider, I really have no idea what neighbourhoods to avoid for heavy drug, street people areas..
Thanks for the help so far, the areas listed thus far look great, we'll be in the city for a couple of days next week and hope to walk around a lot to get a feel.
You'd probably fit in nicely on Edmonton SSP
Are you looking for a house, townhouse, condo, apartment, or other? Can you afford well-off areas? Yeah, I think you've read the hype a little too much. Edmonton is a completely safe city. Yes, there are places that are sketchy and you may want to avoid living in (although just being in them for a visit during the day is fine ftmp) but keep in mind there are American cities that would love to have Edmonton's insane anomaly of a year with homicides.
Anyways, you might want to check out Alberta Ave
. It's a little run down in parts, but there is a lot of affordable character housing, shops/eats within walking distance, etc. With Parkdale, you're close to Coliseum LRT Station which can get you to numerous points in the city (or major bus transfer points like University, Clareview, and Southgate). Alberta Ave has the advantage of being closer to Downtown and Kingsway Mall and NAIT. These areas are very up and coming.
If you want something less run down, you could also check out Glenora
, if you can afford it, as it is quite well-off. It is walking distance to 124 St (shops and restaurants) and the Royal Alberta Museum, along with being a short car/bus ride to Downtown and Oliver Square. Plus, there is a lot of gorgeous old houses.
If, however, you cannot afford Glenora, you may also like Westmount
. Some great character, but smaller houses. It is right next to 124 Street (on the eastern fringe) and Westmount Mall (on the western fringe), which should fill your basic amenities and evenings out bill. Also, the neighbourhood is not too far from Downtown and Westmount has some different multifamily options. The closer to 124 Street, the more charming old houses (so 125/126 Streets). Wesmount Mall has a bus terminal which can allow you to take buses easily to Downtown (from there you can do easy LRT transfer if need be), West Edmonton Mall, etc.
If you like apartment/condo living and can find a place that allows kids, Oliver
may be perfect. Variety of price ranges and right in the heart of the city, Oliver's often considered apart of the Downtown itself. Bars, grocers, coffeeshops, dentists, pizzerias, office supply stores, salons, etc. line 124 St, Jasper Ave, 104 Ave, and 109 Street. You may also want to check out Downtown proper, but it is a little less residential-focused and at times sketchy (east of 104 Street, in the business/arts district, not as much in the residential areas). Downtown
is home to City Centre Mall, 104 St (new condos, old warehouses, outdoor market), many cultural amenities (including festivals) and with both Oliver and Downtown, your backyard is the largest urban parkland system in North America (the river valley). Downtown is home to underground LRT every few blocks along with some of the best and most frequent bus routes in the city. Oliver has many buses that can easily take you Downtown in a jiffy.
You might also like Strathcona
. Lots of multifamily, but also some nice houses (particularly around Mill Creek, east of 99 St). With this, you're in the same neighbourhood as Whyte Ave - the city's most vibrant commercial street. Theatres, bars, clothing shops, bookstores, grocers, restaurants, fast food, record shops, knick-knack stores, etc. are found here in abundance. This is also where the Old Strathcona Farmers' Market, Edmonton Fringe (2nd largest in the world), Ice sculptures, and Halloweens in Edmonton hang their hat. The good thing is that with the aforementioned Mill Creek portion of the neighbourhood, you can be within walking distance of this, yet still have some piece and quiet as you're disconnected a bit from Whyte's main drag, yet still within walking distance of community orientated shops (and East Whyte, a less busy version of the Whyte Ave in most people's minds). If you like Whyte Ave and the idea of being near it, but without the noise and more single family options, you may want to also try Ritchie
. Both eastern Strathcona and Ritchie have the added benefit of having Mill Creek and Bonnie Doon Mall within walking distance. Ritchie is just with less character (mostly postwar 1950s/1960s housing iirc) but is a little cheaper, I think. Whyte is home to many bus routes, many of which can take you to the University of Alberta's University LRT Station which can then take you Downtown, Southgate, 118 Ave (Alberta Ave/Parkdale), Grandin, stadium/arena for concerts and sports, South Campus, etc.