East Side vs West Side | Vancouver, WA – Which Side is BETTER?

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Are you considering a move to Vancouver, Washington but not sure which side of the city is right for you? In this informative video, host Hannah Dubyne of Dubyne Realty Group delves into the differences between the East and West sides of Vancouver. The East side, which saw significant development in the 90s and 2000s, offers newer neighborhoods like Fishers Landing and easy access to shopping and amenities. On the other hand, the West side, with its historical significance, includes downtown Vancouver, Uptown, Lakes Shore, Fida, Hazeldell, and Salmon Creek. Both sides have their own advantages, and the choice ultimately depends on your personal preferences and lifestyle. Whether you’re a long-time resident or considering a move to Vancouver, Hannah and her team are ready to assist with your real estate needs.

Table of Contents

Overview of Vancouver, WA

Vancouver, Washington is a vibrant and diverse city located in Clark County. With a population of approximately 184,000, it is the largest city in the county. Vancouver is known for its stunning natural landscapes, rich history, and welcoming community. The city is divided into two main regions: the East side and the West side. Each side has its own unique characteristics and attractions, making Vancouver an exciting place to live and explore.

Description of the city: geography, population, culture

Situated along the Columbia River, Vancouver offers breathtaking views of both the water and the surrounding mountains. The city’s location provides easy access to outdoor recreational activities such as hiking, biking, and boating. Vancouver has a mild climate, with warm summers and cool winters, making it an ideal place for those who enjoy a moderate climate.

The population of Vancouver is diverse, with a mix of families, young professionals, and retirees. The city has a strong sense of community and is known for its friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Residents of Vancouver take pride in their city and are actively involved in community events and initiatives.

Vancouver is a culturally rich city, with a variety of festivals, art galleries, and theaters to explore. The city has a thriving arts scene and is home to numerous local artists and performers. From live music concerts to art shows, there is always something exciting happening in Vancouver.

General characteristics of the East and West sides

The East side of Vancouver is characterized by its newer developments and modern amenities. It offers a wide range of housing options, from apartments to single-family homes. The East side is known for its family-friendly neighborhoods and excellent schools. It is also home to a number of shopping centers and recreational facilities.

On the other hand, the West side of Vancouver is known for its historical significance and charm. It is home to the city’s downtown area, which is filled with beautiful historic buildings and landmarks. The West side offers a mix of housing options, including historic homes and newer developments. It is a hub of activity, with a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues.

Brief history of development on both sides

The West side of Vancouver has a rich history dating back to the 19th century when the first settlers landed in the area. Downtown Vancouver, with its historic buildings and landmarks, reflects the city’s earliest roots. Over the years, the West side has seen gradual development and growth, preserving its historical significance while also embracing modern amenities.

The East side of Vancouver has experienced significant development in recent decades. In the 1990s and 2000s, new neighborhoods and communities began to emerge, catering to the needs of a growing population. Fishers Landing, in particular, saw a boom in development during this time and has become a desirable area for residents.

Both the East and West sides have played a crucial role in shaping Vancouver’s identity and continue to be important in the city’s ongoing growth and development.

Specifics of East Side Vancouver

Definition of what areas constitute the East side

The East side of Vancouver includes neighborhoods and communities located east of I-205. It encompasses a broad geographic area, including neighborhoods such as Fishers Landing, Cascade Park, Orchards, and Camas, among others. These areas are known for their newer developments, family-friendly atmosphere, and access to amenities.

Historical background and major phases of development

While the East side of Vancouver has a shorter historical timeline compared to the West side, it has undergone significant development in recent decades. In the 1990s and 2000s, there was a surge in residential and commercial development, leading to the creation of new neighborhoods, shopping centers, and schools. This period of development transformed the East side into a thriving and desirable area to live.

Notable neighborhoods and landmarks

One of the notable neighborhoods on the East side of Vancouver is Fishers Landing. This neighborhood experienced a boom in development in the 1990s and has become known for its well-maintained homes, parks, and excellent schools. Other notable neighborhoods include Cascade Park, which offers a mix of housing options and convenient access to shopping centers, and Orchards, which has a diverse community and a range of cultural amenities.

Real estate trends in East Vancouver

Real estate in East Vancouver is characterized by a mix of single-family homes, townhouses, and apartments. The housing market on the East side has seen steady growth in recent years, with increasing demand for homes in desirable neighborhoods. Prices of homes vary depending on the location and size, with some neighborhoods commanding higher prices due to their amenities and proximity to schools and shopping centers.

Exploring the West Side of Vancouver

Specifics of what entails the West side

The West side of Vancouver encompasses the city’s downtown area, Uptown, Lakes Shore, Fida, Hazeldell, and Salmon Creek. These neighborhoods offer a mix of historic homes, modern developments, and a vibrant downtown atmosphere. The West side is known for its charming streets lined with boutiques, restaurants, and cafes.

Historical significance of the West side

The West side of Vancouver holds significant historical value as it is the area where the city’s first settlers landed. Downtown Vancouver, in particular, is rich in history, with many well-preserved buildings and landmarks. The area served as the center of trade and commerce for early residents and continues to be a vibrant hub of activity.

Important neighborhoods and landmarks

Downtown Vancouver is the heart of the West side and is home to the city’s central business district. It is characterized by its historic buildings, parks, and bustling streets. Uptown Vancouver offers a mix of residential and commercial properties, with a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues.

Other notable neighborhoods on the West side include Lakes Shore, Fida, and Hazeldell. These areas offer a mix of housing options and are known for their community-oriented atmosphere and local businesses.

Current real estate trends on the West side

Real estate on the West side of Vancouver includes a range of options, from historic homes in downtown Vancouver to newer developments in areas like Fida and Salmon Creek. The West side’s real estate market is dynamic, with demand varying depending on location and property type. Homes in downtown Vancouver and Uptown tend to command higher prices due to their historical value and proximity to amenities.

Lifestyle and Atmosphere

Comparing the vibe and character of East and West Vancouver

The East and West sides of Vancouver offer distinct vibes and atmospheres that cater to different lifestyles. The West side, with its historical charm and urban amenities, appeals to those who enjoy a vibrant downtown lifestyle. The East side, on the other hand, offers a more suburban feel, with newer developments and family-friendly neighborhoods.

Community engagement and amenities on both sides

Both the East and West sides of Vancouver have strong community engagement and offer a wide range of amenities. Community centers, parks, and recreational facilities are available in both areas, providing residents with opportunities for leisure and socializing. The sense of community is strong on both sides, with residents actively participating in local events and initiatives.

Local events and festivals

Vancouver is known for its lively events and festivals that take place throughout the year. From the Vancouver Farmers Market to the Recycled Arts Festival, there is always something happening in the city. These events showcase the community’s vibrant culture, talents, and local businesses and provide opportunities for residents to come together and celebrate.

Outdoor and recreational activities

One of the highlights of living in Vancouver is the proximity to outdoor activities. Both the East and West sides offer access to beautiful parks, hiking trails, and waterways. From exploring the Columbia River Gorge to enjoying a leisurely walk along the Waterfront Renaissance Trail, there are countless opportunities to engage with nature and stay active.

Educational Facilities

Overview of schools and institutions on both sides

Vancouver is home to a variety of public and private schools that provide quality education to students of all ages. Both the East and West sides have a range of elementary, middle, and high schools that are well-rated and offer diverse curriculum options. Vancouver Public Schools and Evergreen Public Schools are the main public school districts serving the city.

Comparing ratings and performances of public and private schools

Public schools in Vancouver have consistently been rated highly, with many earning top marks for their academic programs and student outcomes. The district has dedicated teachers and staff who strive to provide a supportive learning environment for students. Private schools in Vancouver also offer excellent educational opportunities, catering to individual learning needs and providing a more specialized curriculum.

Availability of colleges and universities

Vancouver is home to a number of colleges and universities that offer a variety of degree programs. Washington State University Vancouver, Clark College, and Concordia University are among the higher education institutions in the area. These institutions provide opportunities for higher learning and contribute to the overall intellectual and cultural fabric of the city.

Access to libraries and research facilities

Vancouver boasts a robust library system that serves the needs of the community. The Fort Vancouver Regional Library District operates multiple branches throughout the city, providing access to a vast collection of books, digital resources, and research materials. These libraries are not only a valuable resource for education and learning but also serve as community gathering spaces.

Housing and Real Estate

Examining housing trends on both sides

Both the East and West sides of Vancouver offer a range of housing options to suit different preferences and budgets. The East side has seen significant development in recent years, with newer homes, townhouses, and apartments being constructed. The West side, with its historical homes and diverse architecture, appeals to those looking for unique and character-filled properties.

Affordability index for the East and West side

The affordability of housing on both sides of Vancouver varies depending on factors such as location, property type, and market conditions. Generally, the East side tends to have more affordable options, especially in newer developments, while the West side, particularly in downtown and Uptown areas, may have higher price ranges.

Analysis of market conditions

Vancouver’s real estate market has been experiencing steady growth in recent years, with a strong demand for housing. The city’s desirability and proximity to Portland, Oregon, contribute to increased interest from homebuyers. Market conditions may vary depending on factors such as location, property type, and current trends.

Potential for real estate investment

Vancouver offers opportunities for real estate investment, with both the East and West sides seeing growth and development. Buying properties in desirable neighborhoods, keeping an eye on market trends, and working with a knowledgeable real estate agent can help individuals make informed investment decisions.

Shopping and Dining

Availability of shopping centers

Vancouver provides a variety of shopping options to cater to residents’ needs. The East side is home to shopping centers such as Cascade Station and Columbia Tech Center, offering a range of retailers and dining establishments. The West side, particularly downtown and Uptown areas, offers a mix of local boutiques, specialty shops, and larger retail centers.

Variety of dining establishments

Food lovers will find a diverse and vibrant dining scene in Vancouver. From trendy cafes to international cuisine, there is something to suit every palate. The city boasts a mixture of locally-owned restaurants, as well as popular national chains, ensuring that residents have a variety of dining options to choose from.

Locally-owned businesses vs. corporate chains

Vancouver has a strong entrepreneurial spirit, with many local businesses thriving in the city. Both the East and West sides have a mix of locally-owned businesses and corporate chains. Supporting local businesses not only helps the local economy but also adds to the unique character of the city.

Farmers markets and organic food availability

Vancouver residents have access to fresh and locally sourced products through farmers markets held throughout the city. The Vancouver Farmers Market, in particular, offers a wide variety of locally grown produce, artisan goods, and food vendors. Additionally, several grocery stores in the area prioritize organic food options, catering to the health-conscious community.

Transportation and Commuting

Public transportation options

Vancouver offers a range of public transportation options for residents to navigate the city and surrounding areas. C-Tran operates bus routes throughout Vancouver and provides convenient connections to neighboring communities. The city is also well-connected to the Portland metropolitan area through the light rail system, making commuting to Oregon easily accessible.

Ease of commuting within the city and to surrounding areas

Vancouver’s layout and transportation infrastructure make it relatively easy to commute within the city and to surrounding areas. Major highways such as I-5 and I-205 offer convenient access to downtown Portland and other cities in the Pacific Northwest. The city’s bike-friendly infrastructure and extensive trail network also provide alternative commuting options for those who prefer cycling or walking.

Parking and traffic conditions

Parking in Vancouver is generally available and convenient, with ample street parking and designated parking lots and garages. While traffic conditions can vary depending on the time of day and specific routes, Vancouver is known for its manageable traffic flow compared to larger urban areas. Rush hour traffic may occur on major highways and some busy roadways but is generally not as extensive as in larger cities.

Healthcare Access

Comparison of healthcare facilities

Vancouver is home to various healthcare facilities that provide quality medical care to residents. PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center and Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center are two of the city’s main hospitals, offering a wide range of services and specialties. In addition, there are numerous clinics, urgent care centers, and specialized healthcare providers throughout the city.

Access to general practitioners and specialists

Residents of Vancouver have access to a diverse network of general practitioners and specialists. The city has a robust healthcare system, ensuring that individuals can find the right doctors and specialists for their specific healthcare needs. Many healthcare providers in Vancouver prioritize patient-centered care and focus on building strong doctor-patient relationships.

Pharmacies and emergency services availability

Pharmacies are readily available throughout Vancouver, with numerous national chains and local pharmacies serving the community. Residents have easy access to prescription medications and over-the-counter healthcare products. Emergency services, including hospitals, urgent care centers, and ambulance services, are also readily available to provide immediate medical assistance when needed.

Fitness and wellness centers

Vancouver prioritizes the health and wellness of its residents, with numerous fitness and wellness centers throughout the city. Gyms, yoga studios, and wellness centers offer a range of classes, programs, and services to promote physical and mental well-being. Whether it’s hitting the gym, trying a new fitness class, or participating in wellness workshops, there are plenty of options for residents to prioritize their health.


In conclusion, Vancouver, WA offers a vibrant and diverse community with something to offer everyone. Whether you choose to live on the East side or the West side, you will find unique characteristics, amenities, and a strong sense of community. The East side, with its newer developments and modern conveniences, appeals to those looking for a suburban lifestyle. The West side, with its historical charm and urban atmosphere, attracts those seeking a vibrant downtown experience.

When making the decision between the East and West sides, it is important to consider individual circumstances, preferences, and lifestyle. Factors such as housing affordability, access to amenities, proximity to schools and jobs, and personal preferences will play a significant role in making the right choice for you.

If you are considering a move to Vancouver, WA, Hannah Dubyne and her team at Dubyne Realty Group are here to help. With deep knowledge and expertise in the Vancouver and Clark County real estate market, they can assist you in finding the perfect home that suits your needs and preferences. Reach out to them today to start your journey to living in Vancouver, WA.

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