The generally accepted boundaries of Greenwood are Aurora Avenue N. (Washington State Route 99) to the east, beyond which lies Licton Springs; N. 105th Street/Holman Road to the north, beyond which lie Broadview and Bitter Lake; 8th Avenue N.W. to the west, beyond which lies Crown Hill, and N. 80th Street to the south, beyond which lies Phinney Ridge. The boundary between Greenwood and Phinney Ridge is somewhat nebulous, and the two neighborhoods do joint planning for events and share a Chamber of Commerce.
The primary north/south thoroughfare through Greenwood is Greenwood Avenue North. North 85th Street carries traffic east to Interstate 5 and west to Golden Gardens Park. Greenwood Avenue carried city streetcar and Seattle-Everett interurban passenger railroad traffic during the first half of the twentieth century.
Originally named Woodland, the neighborhood became Greenwood in 1907. The section of the neighborhood north of 85th street was not annexed to the city of Seattle until 1954; this later access to city services is still evident in the many streets without sidewalks in the northern section of the neighborhood.
Greenwood is served by the North Cluster of the Seattle School District. Primary schools in Greenwood include Greenwood Elementary and Bagley Elementary with several others in nearby neighborhoods. No high school is located within the North Cluster but Nathan Hale, Roosevelt, Ballard, and Ingraham are all nearby.
Phinney Ridge, also known simply as Phinney, is named after the ridge which runs north and south, separating Ballard from Wallingford, from approximately N. 45th to N. 85th Street. The ridge, in turn, is named after Guy C. Phinney, lumber mill owner and real estate developer, whose estate was bought by the city and turned into Woodland Park in 1899. Phinney's estate had included a private menagerie, and the western half of the park became what is now the Woodland Park Zoo.
The generally accepted boundaries of Phinney Ridge are Aurora Avenue N. (Washington State Route 99) to the east, beyond which lies Green Lake and the eastern half of Woodland Park; N. 80th Street to the north, beyond which lies Greenwood; 8th Avenue N.W. to the west, beyond which lies Ballard, and N. 50th and Market Streets to the south, beyond which lies Fremont.
Phinney Ridge's main thoroughfare, which runs atop the ridge south of N. 67th Street, is Phinney Avenue N. North of N. 67th Street, the arterial swings a block to the west and becomes Greenwood Avenue N. The route is lined with many small businesses and shops, as well as the Phinney Neighborhood Center, located at the corner of Phinney and 67th. It has occupied the former John B. Allen Elementary School building, which was built in 1904, since 1981, when the school closed. Phinney Ridge's main east-west thoroughfare is N. 65th Street.
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