Bellingham Neighborhoods


Alabama Hill

Alabama Hill is a beautiful residential neighborhood located in Whatcom County, Washington. The neighborhood is home to around 3,000 people and consists of single-family houses built during the 1960s and 1970s, with contemporary designs and views of the bay and city. The streets are broad and curved, with limited access to arterial streets, and the lots are roughly 7,200 square feet. There are a number of parks and green spaces in the area, such as Whatcom Falls Park, St. Clair Park, and Highland Heights Park, which all offer a variety of recreational activities. The Railroad Trail also runs through the neighborhood, providing a multi-use trail and greenway corridor with a safe overpass of Alabama Street and connection to Whatcom Creek Trail.


The Barkley Neighborhood was established in 2010 as part of the northern boundary review project. It covers 814 acres of land with a diverse range of land uses, from commercial sites such as Sunset Square to the Barkley Urban Village. This Urban Village is the focal point of the neighborhood, and it features a mix of industrial, retail, office, and residential spaces. On the west side of Alabama Hill, there are a number of subdivisions that take advantage of the stunning views of the city and the bay. Barkley Boulevard is lined with beautiful homes and provides easy access to the rest of the neighborhood. All in all, Barkley Neighborhood is a great place to live, work, and play.


The Birchwood neighborhood is an ideal location for people looking for a peaceful rural atmosphere. With large lots, mature landscaping, and narrow streets, Birchwood offers a unique residential experience. Apartment complexes have been built in multifamily zoned areas, providing a variety of housing options. The neighborhood also boasts a commercial area near the intersection of Northwest, W. Maplewood, and Birchwood Avenue, offering local services. Other amenities include the Bellingham Golf and Country Club, Squalicum Creek Greenbelt, Bellingham Technical College, Shuksan Middle School, and Birchwood Park, with a playground, basketball court, and picnic shelter. Nearby Squalicum Creek Park and Little Squalicum Park provide plenty of outdoor activities, while the Bay-to-Baker Trail and Greenway connects the parks, allowing for easy transportation. With so much to offer, Birchwood is a great place to call home!

City Center

Bellingham's City Center is a diverse collection of smaller neighborhoods, serving as the cultural, civic, financial, and service center of the city. Each neighborhood has unique characteristics shaped by historical land uses, topography, and geographic location. The Civic Center houses City and County offices, while the Arts District is home to the Whatcom Museum of History and Art and the Mt. Baker Theater. The Waterfront District has a rich history of industrial and commercial fishing, but is currently being redeveloped into a mix of residential, commercial, and recreational spaces. The Whatcom Creek Trail provides a pedestrian connector from the waterfront to adjacent neighborhoods.


Columbia is a charming neighborhood in Bellingham that boasts historic homes and well-maintained residential structures. The majority of housing is single family, and the Eldridge Historical District is home to many large, historically significant homes. The neighborhood's narrow tree-lined streets and mature landscaping create a picturesque atmosphere. Residents also have access to several parks, including the beloved Elizabeth Park, Carl Lobe, and Lorraine Ellis Parks. Squalicum Creek Greenway borders the neighborhood to the northwest, and Squalicum Creek Park in the adjacent Birchwood Neighborhood is easily accessible.


Located in the northern area of the city, the Cordata Neighborhood is bordered by Meridian Street to the east and West Bakerview Road to the south. The area extends to the city limits to the north, west, and southwest. The neighborhood was formed in 2010 when the boundaries of the Meridian and Guide Meridian/Cordata Neighborhoods were redrawn to acknowledge the area's changing character, environment, and demographics. The Cordata Neighborhood contains various land use zoning designations, including public and planned areas for residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional uses. Development within these designations is regulated under the Cordata Business Park Planned Unit Development (PUD) and the City's Land Use Development Code to preserve and protect the neighborhood's character and qualities.

Cornwall Park

The Cornwall Park neighborhood boasts a beautiful residential atmosphere with well-maintained homes and large lawns, contributing to its charm and character. The area offers convenient access to the freeway and downtown, as well as a major regional park and the Bay to Baker Trail and Greenway. The historic and architecturally significant Roeder Home is a notable feature of the neighborhood. Parkview Elementary School is an asset to the community, and St. Joseph Hospital is an essential regional medical facility and a significant employer in the area. With its diversity of recreation areas and open space, Cornwall Park Neighborhood is a stable, pleasant residential area.


The Edgemoor Neighborhood in southwest Bellingham is a desirable location for its large lots, mature landscaping, and peaceful residential feel. With stunning views of Bellingham Bay and the San Juan Islands, the southern third of the area boasts some of the most magnificent properties in the city. Clark's Point, a protected, heavily wooded peninsula, forms the western boundary of Chuckanut Bay and provides a natural resource amenity. Additionally, the neighborhood is home to Fairhaven Middle School and is adjacent to Fairhaven Park, offering a variety of recreational opportunities to residents.


Fairhaven is a historic neighborhood in Bellingham, Washington that was one of three pioneer settlements on Bellingham Bay that merged to become the City of Bellingham in 1904. Its 600 residents live in a mix of housing options and have access to many services within walking distance, including shops, a grocery store, and a public library. The commercial center of Fairhaven is the Fairhaven National Register Historic District, which is home to 17 beautiful historic buildings and many local businesses. Fairhaven's marine orientation is emphasized by Padden Creek and Marine Park, a 2-acre park on the waterfront. The Fairhaven Village Green is a hub of activity in the commercial core with concerts, movies, bocce ball, and a farmer’s market. The South Bay Trail connects Fairhaven with Bellingham’s City Center, Fairhaven Park, and the Chuckanut Mountains.

Happy Valley

Happy Valley is a neighborhood in Bellingham, Washington that was settled by early residents on small platted lots near Fairhaven and larger "garden tracts" throughout the valley. The neighborhood became popular for student housing due to its proximity to Western Washington University (WWU), resulting in the construction of apartments and infilling among single-family homes. Despite development, pockets of quiet and undeveloped areas remain where you can find wildlife and enjoy the natural beauty of the Chuckanut Mountains and Bellingham Bay. Happy Valley Park offers a small, active neighborhood park with a playground, picnic shelter, and open field, while Connelly Creek Nature Area is the largest public natural area in Happy Valley established to preserve Connelly Creek, its associated wetlands, and wildlife habitat.


Irongate Neighborhood was created in 2010 as a result of northern boundary review project to accommodate the rapid growth of north-end neighborhoods. It is located primarily east of Interstate 5 and north of Sunset Drive, with King Mountain Neighborhood to the west and Barkley Neighborhood to the south. The area is zoned almost entirely for industrial development, making it one of the major employment centers in Bellingham, with only a small portion (3 acres) reserved for commercial development. The neighborhood covers about 900 acres, including Sunset Pond and open space along the Squalicum Creek corridor, which are zoned Public.

King Mountain

The King Mountain neighborhood covers around 635 acres between the Meridian and Irongate neighborhoods. With its prominent feature, King Mountain, residents living on the hill get to enjoy the panoramic view of Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands, and the City. The neighborhood also has several transportation arterials such as East Bakerview Road, Telegraph Road, James Street Road, and Kellogg Road. The residential areas range from low to high-density, with scattered single-family detached homes on large lots to high-density mobile homes on very small lots. There is strong evidence of the neighborhood's future growth as it is located between large industrial and commercial areas and has a long history of urban zoning.

Lettered Streets

Whatcom Creek's lower falls powered sawmills that drew the first settlers to Whatcom in the 1850s. The brick building on E Street and Pickett House are surviving structures from that period. The neighborhood, constructed from the late 1890s and early 1900s, was established as a middle-class community adjacent to the city's downtown district. The Great Northern Depot, Aftermath Clubhouse, Roth Block, and First Christian Church site are all on the National Historic Register. The neighborhood became run-down in the 1960s, but was revitalized through community effort. Today, it includes single-family homes, small apartment buildings, offices, parks, and the Whatcom Middle School/Battersby Field complex. Maritime Heritage Park, a popular multi-use park and fish-hatchery, defines the southern boundary of the neighborhood.


The Meridian Neighborhood in the northern part of the City comprises a mix of commercial, industrial, and residential zoning designations. Most commercial and industrial properties have been developed since the neighborhood's inception. Bellis Fair, located in the southern/central portion of the area, is a regional retail area and a designated future District Urban Village. The eastern section of the neighborhood along West Bakerview Road is primarily zoned for commercial and industrial purposes and is viewed as a "gateway" into Bellingham due to its proximity to Interstate 5 and the airport. The north side of West Bakerview Road is expected to be developed in the next planning period.


The Puget Neighborhood in Bellingham is a diverse area located south of Whatcom Creek and east of Interstate 5. The neighborhood features single and multi-family residential areas on the south and east, with industrial and commercial areas on the north and west. Many homes in the neighborhood have excellent views of Bellingham Bay or the Canadian Cascades. The Civic Athletic Complex, which includes a number of sports facilities, walking trails, and wetland areas, is located at the north edge of the neighborhood. The Whatcom Creek Trail provides a connection from the neighborhood to several other parks and neighborhoods.


The Roosevelt Neighborhood is a diverse area located east of Interstate 5, with a mix of land use ranging from single-family homes to light industrial buildings. The neighborhood offers a wide range of housing styles, from 100-year-old homes to modern apartment complexes, all of which are generally well-maintained. The northern boundary of the neighborhood offers stunning views of Bellingham and the Bay, while the Railroad Trail provides a recreational experience as well as an important wildlife link to adjacent corridors and open space. Roosevelt Park, adjacent to the Boys and Girls Club, is a neighborhood activity center with a playground, picnic area, basketball court, and loop trail. With over 6,000 residents, Roosevelt is the most populous neighborhood in the city.


The Samish Neighborhood, situated on the southeastern edge of the city, is a tranquil place to live with plenty of open space and wooded areas. The natural beauty of the landscape adds to the country-like atmosphere and complements the mix of modest older homes and newly developed areas on the eastern slopes. Many homes are well kept and located on large lots, making it an ideal place to settle down. Lake Padden Park is a popular attraction that offers something for everyone, from playgrounds to golf courses. The neighborhood also benefits from the Samish Crest Greenway corridor, which provides scenic views and recreational opportunities while relieving crowding.


Sehome Hill is a historic neighborhood in Bellingham, characterized by its steep bedrock formation and impressive views of Bellingham Bay and Mount Baker. The neighborhood is one of the city's oldest and most centrally located residential areas, with over 80% of the housing being over 20 years old. The Sehome Hill National Historic District contains many large, architecturally impressive houses of historical value. The 165-acre Sehome Hill Arboretum is a prominent open space/natural area that defines the southern and western borders of the neighborhood and includes walking trails and dramatic views of Bellingham Bay. Both Laurel and Forest & Cedar are neighborhood parks which feature playgrounds, half court basketball, and open lawn areas for informal play.

Silver Beach

Silver Beach is a beautiful neighborhood located on the eastern edge of Bellingham on Lake Whatcom. The area has a wide variety of ages and styles of housing, with most being well-maintained and surrounded by well-landscaped lots. The neighborhood offers miles of shoreline along the lake, providing residents with stunning views and recreational opportunities. Bloedel Donovan Park, one of the city's most popular parks, offers boating access, swimming areas, playgrounds, basketball and volleyball courts, and more. Meanwhile, Big Rock Garden is a formal, landscaped garden with walking paths that connect to Silver Beach Elementary School. The city also maintains several access points to Lake Whatcom and the Railroad Trail and north side of Whatcom Falls Park are in the Silver Beach neighborhood.

South Hill

South Hill is a charming neighborhood with unique and appealing design characteristics that attract over 3,000 residents. The area is divided into different sections, each with its own distinct features. The Ridgeway area is located south of the university and has been developed since World War II, while the homes below 17th Street were built in the early 1900s. The neighborhood is well-known for its spectacular views of Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands, and the Canadian coastal range mountains. Additionally, Boulevard Park, one of the most popular parks in the city, and the newly constructed Taylor Street Dock are perfect for strolling and viewing harbor activity. Lowell Elementary School, a highly valued location in the area, is also an attractive spot for neighborhood activity.


Sunnyland Neighborhood, located west of Interstate 5 and north of Whatcom Creek, is a diverse neighborhood in Bellingham with over 2,200 residents. The southern third of the neighborhood is dominated by industrial uses, while multifamily and single-family areas surround a neighborhood commercial area at the Alabama/James Street intersection. The neighborhood also includes open space and play fields at the reconstructed Bellingham High School, Sunnyland Park, Sunnyland Elementary School, and adjacent Memorial Park. The northern and western parts of the neighborhood contain low and higher-density residential uses, respectively, with many well-maintained two-story older homes.

Whatcom Falls

Whatcom Falls is a charming neighborhood located on the eastern edge of the city, south of Whatcom Creek. It boasts a residential area with over 2,000 residents and is split by Lakeway Drive. The neighborhood is characterized by a density of four units per acre, with most of the development being residential. Bayview Cemetery and Whatcom Falls Park are located to the north of the neighborhood, while the southern and eastern portions of the area have large tracts of undeveloped land. The neighborhood is also home to public institutions such as Kulshan Middle School and Bloedel-Donovan Park, with future park and trailhead development planned for Birch Street's end, known as "Lookout Mountain."


The York Neighborhood is a historic area situated west of Interstate 5 and east of Bellingham's City Center. The neighborhood boasts many large, well-built homes on sandstone foundations, with distinctive landmarks such as sandstone outcroppings at Harriet Spanel Park and Rock Hill Park. While the majority of houses are small and built on smaller lots, the neighborhood contains many examples of fine Victorian architecture. The community has a strong single-family orientation with a population of over 2,600 residents. Neighborhood recreation is available at Harriet Spanel Park and Rock Hill Park, both of which offer playgrounds and open fields.