Millwood, Washington, Feature Image

#3 Millwood, Washington

Metro Spokane Places to Live

2020 population: 1,790
Drive time to downtown Coeur d’Alene: 30 minutes
Drive time to downtown Spokane: 20 minutes


Metro Spokane Suburbs
One could make an argument that Millwood should be on the Central Cities map, not The Suburbs map. If one were to make such an argument, they would be right.

Overall Character: ★★★★★
Urban: ★★★★★
Suburban: ☆☆☆☆☆
Walkability: ☆☆☆☆☆
Market Activity: ★★★★★
Farm Town: ☆☆☆☆☆
Timber Town: ☆☆☆☆☆
Lake / River Town: ★★★★★


Millwood, Washington, Street Trees
You’re right. One photo of Millwood’s spectacular street tree canopy is not enough. Here’s another.

Millwood Community Description

Millwood is an urban island in the middle of persistently rough seas. Sailors will tell you Millwood is the mystic land of mermaids only those with experience know how to find, but to get there, you must navigate the Roaring 60s, otherwise known as Spokane Valley. Many seamen have been lost due to Spokane Valley’s punishing suburban environment that stimulates nothing more than traffic congestion and 30 foot swells. A seasoned boat captain forms a line on his face for every man overboard lost to suburbia, and his thousand yard stare from the pier on a cold, foggy morning is a like a portal into his urban soul.

Indeed, perhaps it is more because of Spokane Valley and less because of Millwood’s historic urban majesty, that Millwood is ranked so high on this list. It’s the same theory as going to the club with your ugly friends. Spokane Valley makes Millwood look good. Millwood’s leadership should send a heartfelt thank you to Spokane Valley leadership and encourage their continued incompetence within the realm of urbanism. For that matter, I should send a thank you note to my ugly friends for helping me meet the love of my life.

Millwood incorporated in 1927 and, you guessed it, it’s an old mill town. Millwood is one of the smaller munies in the metro but it is, no question, square foot for foot the highest proportion of quality square feet from here to Pike’s Place. Tree lined streets, a rich inventory of historic structures, and the Spokane River create metro Spokane’s best closeted urban municipality.

Millwood’s old downtown has survived the wrecking ball. It could use some touching up, but I’m certainly not complaining. The true downside of Millwood is being surrounded by Spokane Valley. Indeed, it’s a blessing and a curse.

Millwood, Washington, Old Rail Town
Millwood is an old rail town.

Downtown Millwood, Washington
Millwood on the right. A mess on the left.