West Salem, Oregon has its own zip code, situated across the Willamette River, in Polk County. Home to many great orchards, vineyards, and farms in the western rural areas. This makes West Salem an excellent place to live if you want to experience the roomy hills and farmlands to the lead to the Coastal Mountain Range and the jaw dropping Oregon Coast..
Fantastic Perks Hidden In West Salem
Salem, the state capital, straddles two counties: Polk County and Marion County. West Salem is the only neighborhood of Salem that is located in Polk County. The Willamette river borders the east, the historic ‘downtown’ sits at the southern edge, and to the west lies the gateway to rural orchard farms, vineyards, wineries, hunting, fishing, and hiking. One hour farther lies the jaw dropping Oregon Coast, where you can discover the Tillamook Cheese Factory, Lincoln City, Newport, Cannon Beach, Oceanside, and Astoria.
Several hidden gems are found right here in West Salem, in addition to the great schools located here, including West Salem High School, below.
Discover lots of local shops and restaurants, such as Annette’s, La Hacienda Real, Momiji Sushi, Hawaiian Time, On Any Sundae Ice Cream, and BREW Coffee House and music venue. Oak Knoll Golf and the Pentacle Theater are located at the western edge as well. Unique places like these offer a pleasant experience, with quaint atmospheres and historic architecture.
Across the bridge, Salem has plenty of events every year that people enjoy attending. One of the most interesting ones is the Oregon State Fair which takes place around mid-August at its fairgrounds. The World Beat features 70 different cultures gathering to display native dress, music, food and dance, at the Riverfront Park, connected by a walking path from West Salem to the park area.
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Education in West Salem
Home of the Titans, West Salem High School has an excellent reputation in sports, the arts and STEM classes.
Higher education is close to West Salem. Willamette University is one of the oldest universities in the west and was established in 1842. The school’s campus includes a historic downtown Salem main campus, a modern urban research facility, and an outdoor classroom in the forest.
Chemeketa Community College provides different programs to students through its four campuses throughout Marion County. This school has been delivering affordable education since the 1800s.
West Salem is fortunate to have a beautiful Mediterranean climate. This means it has warm, dry summers and cool but mild winters with lots of rain in the fall. There are also many sunny days throughout the year.
The average high temperature in July is 82 degrees, ideal for enjoying all of Salem’s outdoor activities. In the winter, the area receives about four inches of snow and 45 inches of rain. Collectively there are 152 days per year with measurable precipitation. Winter temperatures stay a touch above freezing with an average low of 35 degrees.
Public Transportation in West Salem, Oregon
Salem, Oregon, has wonderful options for public transportation. The local facility is the Cherriots Transit which includes buses and trolleys that can operate throughout different parts of town or to Portland if you want an alternative commute option. For bicycle riders, there is a continuous bike path that connects the downtown area to the West Salem bridge, that easily brings riders into Riverfront Park and crosses the Peter Courtney Minto Island Bridge crosses Willamette River again into miles and miles the the paved bike paths into the nature preserve, along the river, with a huge dog park, and walking paths as well.
TriMet provides regional transit options in both rural areas as well as the Portland metropolitan area. Other transportation services are also starting to appear, including Uber for carpooling, Zipcar for car renting, Car2Go for car rentals – all of which are intended to help people share rides and save on gas costs at the same time.
The nearest international airports are in Eugene and Portland, Oregon, which is about an hour’s drive away. there is a shuttle service from the local Salem Airport to and from PDX.
Living in West Salem, Oregon
If you’re living in Polk County, there’s a population of 33,000, among whom the median household income is estimated at $100,000, compared to the State median household income of $67,058. Median home values in this area are estimated at $495,000, compared to the Oregon median home value of $434,000.
The Polk County area is much smaller than Marion County, with a population of 86,085. The median annual household income in this region is $72,914, with median home values of $332,200.
Volunteer opportunities are available as well to help improve the city parks, clean up the riverfront, maintain school yards, and much more.
West Salem is a beautiful neighborhood with several dog parks, local commerce and restaurants, and easy access to Wineries, Spirit Mountain Casino, and the Oregon Coast. The public education system includes both public and private schools, while higher education opportunities include the adjacent Western Oregon University.
For more information about living in Salem, Oregon, contact your West Salem real estate agent today.