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Boise Idaho is a wonderful place to live and has been consistently recognized as one of the best cities in America for its low cost of living, employment, and recreation. Here are some of Boise's most recent accolades:
2nd Best Place to Raise A Family Forbes, 2012
3rd Best Place to Retire CNNMoney, 2011
4th Best City to Live, Work and Play Kiplinger Personal Finance, May 2008
100 Best Communities for Young People America's Promise Alliance, January 2008
Top Spot for Women to Start a New Career More Magazine, September 2007
Best City for Mid-Level Professionals Kiplinger.com, May 2007
No. 10 of 375 Best Places to Live Cities Ranked & Rated, 2nd Edition, May 2007
No. 3 Best Place for Business and Careers Forbes Magazine, April 2007
No. 6 of 72 Major Cities for Environmental Quality Earth Day Network, February 2007
6th Best City for Environmental Quality Earth Day Network, February 2007
Tree City USA and Growth Award The National Arbor Day Foundation, February 2007
Most Secure Place to Live in the United States Among Large Metropolitan Areas Farmers Insurance Group, December 2006
A Top Retirement Spot Where to Retire magazine, September 2006
No. 8 Best Place to Live Money Magazine, July 2006
The 2008 Boise population estimate was 214,490. When combined with the surrounding communities of Ada & Canyon counties (Meridian, Eagle, Nampa, Caldwell, etc.) the total population is around 589,000.
Boise Population Growth
Not all neighborhoods in Boise are homogeneous- each has its own character and amenities. Whether someone is looking for a historic home in the "North End", a view home on the "Boise Bench" rim, or a new home in NW Boise- there's likely something for everyone. The following is a brief description and generalization of the various neighborhoods in Boise. Download the Boise Neighborhood Map to see where the boundaries are.
N Boise. North Boise (or the "North End") has some of the most desirable real estate because of its proximity to downtown, the foothills, mature landscaping, and the unique character of the historic homes. North Boise is the location of the first residential developments that began in the 1870s but also has some newer neighborhoods in the foothills. Some of the most notable areas in the North End are Harrison Blvd, Hyde Park, and Camels Back Park. Real estate prices in the North End usually have a higher price per/SF than other areas around Boise. Home prices generally range from around $200,000 to $800,000.
NE Boise. This is another very popular area in Boise for the same reasons of character, history, and proximity to downtown. As you go 10-15 minutes East of downtown there are newer neighborhoods in NE Boise such as Harris Ranch, River Heights, and El Paseo. Notable areas in NE Boise are Warm Spring Ave, Idaho Botanical Gardens, and the Boise Green Belt. Home prices generally range from $250,000 to $1,000,000.
SE Boise. South East Boise has both modest and upscale neighborhoods. The more modest homes can be found close to Boise State University while many upscale homes are in developments nestled along the Boise River. This area generally offers more purchasing power than in N and NE Boise but still many of the conveniences of living close to town. Home prices generally range from $170,000 to $600,000.
Boise Bench. The "Bench" is an area south of Boise and is very diverse in both the age and quality of housing. The most desirable areas on the Boise Bench are homes that overlook downtown Boise, the foothills, and Boise city parks. Real estate prices here are generally between $100,000 to $200,000.
S Boise. If you're looking for purchasing power in the Boise the area, South Boise will give you a lot of options. Located South of I-84, these neighborhoods are 15 to 20 minutes away from downtown Boise. South Boise has many newer developments with prices ranging from $150,000 to $300,000.
W Boise. West Boise was largely developed in the 1970s and 1980s. Homes in this area will give you more purchasing power than areas closer to downtown Boise. This area is about a 15-20 minute commute to downtown Boise. Home generally range from $150,000 to $300,000.
NW Boise. NW Boise is a very large and diverse area. It has homes built from the 1920s to brand new custom homes. The older homes are located in the areas as you get closer to downtown. The newer developments are generally further away. NW Boise has been growing in popularity because of its good access to downtown and proximity to the Boise foothills. Purchasing power is relatively strong in this area. Homes generally range from $150,000 to $600,000.
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Boise has a great four-season climate and has things to do no matter the time of year such as skiing in the winter or boating in the summer.
Skiing. There are three ski resorts within about three hours of Boise. The closest is Bogus Basin just about 30-40minutes from downtown Boise, Brundage Mountain about 2 hours, and Sun Valley about 3 hours away.
Hunting & Fishing. Idaho has many outdoor opportunities in including hunting and fishing. Check out the Idaho fish and Game web site for tons of information.
Boating. Within about an hour is Lucky Peak Reservoir, Arrowrock Dam, and Black Canyon Reservoir. Further North is Lake Cascade and Payette Lake in McCall, ID.
Boise City Parks. Some of the most notable city parks are nestled along the Boise River like Anne Morrison, Kathy Albertson, Julia Davis, and Barber Park. Camels back park is also very popular as it it a link to Boise foothill hiking and biking trails.
Boise Green Belt. The Boise Green Belt is a paved path for walking, running, or biking that spans more than 10 miles along the Boise River.
Hiking & biking. There are over 100 designated hiking and biking trails in and around Boise. Download the Ridge to Rivers Trail Map.
Boise River floating. Bring your own rafts or rent them at Eply's river rentals at Barber park and float the 6 mile stretch to Anne Morrison Park. Complete with rest stops and a shuttle bus, this is great weekend activity with friends and family.
Idaho Botanical Gardens. If you are a garden lover, the 30 acre Idaho Botanical Gardens is a must see.
Golfing. There are 9 golf courses in the city of Boise and even more in the nearby cities of Meridian, Eagle, etc.
Boise has strong employment and has long had below the national average unemployment rate. Major businesses such as Micron, HP, and Simplot CO, base their companies out of Boise. Boise is continually recognized as one the best cities in America for business. You can find more economic information at the Boise City Chamber of Commerce.
Find detailed information on Boise schools at BoiseSchools.org.
More resources if you're relocating to Boise.