Seattle: the Emerald City, known for its waterfront location, sky-high Space Needle, and sweet-scented brews of both the caffeinated and hops varieties. This pedestrian haven of the Northwest is the original home to Boeing, Microsoft and, of course, Starbucks. But Seattle is more than the sum of its accolades: it is a city of arts, culture, recreation – with a somewhat magical, usually casual vibe, that invites one to grab a to-go cup, take a breath of salt air, and step out to see it all.
One of Seattle’s big draws, for tourists and residents alike, is its status as one of the nation’s safest cities. In 2014, Seattle was ranked as the safest pedestrian city in the U.S. (Liberty Mutual Insurance Pedestrian Safety Index). What’s more, it consistently ranks in the top 10 safest cities for families with young children, and as the tenth-safest large metropolitan area, according to a study by Farmers Insurance Group, Most Secure U.S. Places to Live.
But the city’s top safety ratings aren’t a product of luck; they’re the result of a lot of hard work. Seattleites take pride in their city, and have enacted a number of community programs to engage youth, encourage safety, and help keep their streets and citizens secure and healthy. Here’s a look at some of those initiatives:
- Seattle’s “Safest Route to School” program, worked to create 500+ new crosswalks, install more school zone speed-recording cameras, and improve walking routes for the city’s youngest residents.
- Vision Zero and the “Be Super Safe” program, strives to educate drivers, reduce dangerous driving, and provide safer, more pedestrian-friendly streets.
- The Seattle Police Department sponsors several crime prevention programs, including the community-accessible Crime Prevention Coordinators, Block Watch and the annual Night Out Against Crime.
- The city also believes in taking care of its youth through a variety of engaging outreach programs, among them YouthCare, designed to help homeless adolescents get off the streets, Teen Feed, PSKS (Peace for the Streets by Kids from the Streets), and the Seattle Youth Employment Program.
If Seattle’s outreach and safety programs have your feet tapping to explore the city and its surrounds, Seattle Magazine makes it even easier with its handy list of Seattle’s 15 safest neighborhoods. Dubbed “the happy 15,” the list sweeps through the alphabet from Ballard and Burien to Wallingford and West Seattle, with stops at Capital Hill, Georgetown, Ravenna and Queen Anne (among others), along the way.
Without a doubt, Seattle is perfect for afternoon strolls, café-hopping, exploring the arts and urban culture with outright fun, whether you’re going alone or bringing along the whole family. And with its strong reputation for safety, this walker-friendly city is an excellent, low-anxiety choice for your next urban vacation or relocation. To learn more about My Alarm Center’s home security services in Seattle just click here.