Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Southwestern Maple Leaf

Nestled in the area between I-5 and 5th Avenue NE south of NE 92nd Street is a charming part of the Maple Leaf neighborhood. This is the area which I covered in today's 6.3 mile walk.

Gardens are lovingly tended and I did see a few people out gardening on this sunny day. I also saw a few walkers and was greeted by a few dogs fenced into their yards.

Except for a stretch of 5th Avenue, most of the residences were single family homes. Most of the homes were very well kept and the further south I went, the grander the homes seemed to be with lots of brick tudors.

The Banner Triangles at Banner Way NE separate this neighborhood from an I-5 overpass/entrance. I did not attempt to walk Banner Way west of Latona Avenue because there was no footpath or shoulder and walking it would have been too dangerous.

A cement wall separates 1st Avenue NE from I-5.

Most of the streets have sidewalks and curbs but there are also streets that look more like alleys and a few that dead end (some into footpaths).

The downtown skyline is visible from many avenues.

The only things that seemed out of place in this neighborhood were a large, modern structure and a tree that had been brutally pruned.

The small Maple Leaf Business District is located along 5th Avenue around NE 85th Street. It includes an art and framing shop, a hair salon, a florists, a pet grooming shop, a musical instrument shop, a coffee shop, a gas station, a neighborhood grocery/deli, a Hawaiian restaurant, an insurance office, a lawyer's office and the Old 5th Avenue pub (whose sign says it has been serving Maple Leaf for over 75 years and that it has free pool and wi-fi).

Near the southern end of the business district is a short street named Elk Place - I wonder if elk once roamed here the way I roamed today.

I was pleasantly surprised to find such a pretty and peaceful neighborhood between two busy thoroughfares and really enjoyed today's walk.

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