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Highland West Area in Kitchener

It’s that time again! What time, you ask? Time for another entry in WRX Property Group’s ongoing series analyzing the neighbourhoods of Kitchener-Waterloo. We aim to provide you with the basics about the disparate parts of this wonderful, growing region, so that you can make an informed decision when it comes to where you’d like to live. For today’s neighbourhood, we’ll be returning once again to western Kitchener: indeed, this neighbourhood is Kitchener’s westernmost area. Located just south of the border with Waterloo, today’s neighbourhood is: Highland West.
Highland West’s boundaries are made up by University Avenue West in the north (the border with Waterloo); Fischer-Hallman Road in the east; Highland Road West in the south; and Glasgow Street (and a swathe of forested land) in the west. Prices for homes in this area tend to range from the low $300 000s to over $800 000. Highland West is another Kitchener suburb that’s been consistently popular with families, and today well over half of households here have children. Its mixture of available activities, calm, quiet streets, and great access to schools makes it attractive to parents and prospective parents alike. If you’re interested in knowing more about this neighbourhood, specific properties, or anything else, please feel free to contact us; we’ll help however we can.

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Location

Highland West has some large, beautiful parks. One of the nicest aspects of the parks here is that they’re very well connected to one another; residents can follow a foot trail from Resurrection Park in the centre of the neighbourhood over to Northforest Park in the northeast without having to worry about busy streets. Parks here offer everything from well-maintained soccer fields and baseball diamonds to playground equipment and serene bodies of water. The parks offer dense, wooded areas (as in Summerside Woods Park and the larger Monarch Woods Park, on the eastern edge of Highland West) and long, winding networks of walking trails (like the one that winds through Resurrection Park and Lynnvalley Park, all the way to Monarch Woods). With such an abundance of respectably large parks, walkers will be able to enjoy a change of scenery every day, should it please them.

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In terms of shopping and facilities, there are three primary shopping areas near Highland West. The first, Glasgow Heights Plaza, is located in the northeast corner. It includes a grocery store (Food Basics), a pharmacy (Rexall Pharma Plus), a medical centre, a dentist’s office, and a few other options (including a Tim Hortons). To the southeast of Highland West (at the intersection of Highland Road West and Fischer-Hallman) is a slightly larger shopping plaza, with a GoodLife Fitness Centre, a Real Canadian Superstore, and much more). Additionally, in this area is the Forest Heights Community Library – the nearest branch of the Kitchener Public Library network to Highland West residents. On any given week, residents can take part in a wide variety of social activities here, not to mention the inherent benefits granted by a library (such as the books, of course). The Forest Heights Pool, too, is a great place for adults and kids alike. But there’s still one more primary shopping area to address.


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One of Highland West’s most sought-after locations is a recent development, which was completed in the early 2010’s. Located half in the Waterloo neighbourhood of Westvale, and half in Highland West, is the Boardwalk at Ira Needle Boulevard. The Boardwalk is a huge development on the extreme west of Kitchener-Waterloo, and it has become one of the premier shopping areas in the Region of Waterloo. And with a suitably large parking lot (perhaps it could be called Park Place, to continue with the Monopoly Theme), the Boardwalk is a perfect place to visit no matter what the time of day or year. The Boardwalk includes a top of the line medical centre; fitness facilities; a wide variety of dine-in and take-out restaurants, and much more. Stores here include everything from fashion and shoes to sports and office supplies – over 30 individual shops in total. The large Kitchener-Waterloo Walmart Supercentre here provides Highland West residents with convenient, one stop shopping (there’s all the groceries you could ever need, and a Walmart Portrait Studio, enabling you to get a family picture in which you and your family pose with your favourite vegetables). The large Landmark Cinemas 10 Waterloo features many of the latest blockbusters, so after a day of shopping, you can kick back and relax with some popcorn. Highland West residents have all of this and more available to them, just a short drive up Ira Needles Boulevard.


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Education

Students in the public board (WRDSB) will attend different schools depending on where they live. Those living in the area north of Lynnvalley Park will attend Empire Public School for Kindergarten to Grade 6, and Centennial Public School for Grades 7 and 8. These schools are several blocks to the northeast of Highland West, and therefore bussing is available. Students living south of Lynnvalley Park will attend Sandhills Public School for Kindergarten to Grade 6, and Westheights Public School for Grades 7 and 8. Sandhills is within the neighbourhood, and Westheights is quite close by; furthermore, both offer French Immersion. For high school, WRDSB students are zoned for Forest Heights Collegiate Institute – read more about it in its WRX article here. Students in the Catholic board (WCDSB) will attend St. Dominic Savio Catholic School for elementary school, and Resurrection Catholic Secondary School for high school. Both St. Dominic Savio and Resurrection are conveniently located right in the neighbourhood, making the trip to school quick, safe, and simple. Resurrection is the newest Catholic secondary school in Kitchener-Waterloo, so its resources and facilities are all sleek and modern. Being so close to the border with Waterloo makes the two universities there (Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Waterloo) quite accessible to Highland West residents, too. Reaching them is as simple as travelling northeast along University Avenue. Residents can take advantage of the postsecondary education available in Waterloo, while living in a more affordable area of Kitchener – win-win!

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Conclusion

Highland West has a bit of everything, and its most prominent attraction is the Boardwalk, which was constructed to serve as a self-contained, all-purpose shopping and service location. It’s fairly far away from access to the highways, on the one hand, but it’s quite close to Waterloo, on the other. Highland West has several schools within its borders, and several others nearby. It’s a quiet, suburban neighbourhood with plenty of parks, and lovely detached homes (many of which are inhabited by families) that would make a fine place to grow up.

Written by Will Kummer

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