Ballard is one of Seattle’s oldest neighborhoods, founded in 1853 and annexed to Seattle in 1907. Ballard has Scandinavian roots and strong ties with the marine and fishing industries that continue to this day. A hub for local artists, creative boutiques and gourmet bistros, it has become a destination for local Seattle music and nightlife, the majority of which is located in Ballard’s historically-protected core. Ballard is unique, with one foot planted in Seattle’s colorful past and the other stepping into Seattle’s vibrant future. In recent years, single family homes have given way to urban high density housing, including condominiums, townhouses and apartments. There are a variety of neighborhood parks as well as a strong community center and pool. Located northwest of downtown Seattle, the downtown core is easily accessed from 15th Avenue NW.