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Wells Avenue Neighborhood Profile

Reno's Wells Avenue Does Diversity

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Reno, Wells Avenue, shopping, business district, Nevada, NV

Fanciful sculptures greet you at each end of the Wells Avenue business district in Reno, Nevada.

Photo © Stan White

What's It Like:

Reno's Wells Avenue neighborhood is a mix of the old, the new, the repaired, and the renovated. There is an amazing variety to Wells Avenue residential areas, from decrepit little stick houses to sturdy brick homes that have been extensively remodeled. Among the businesses on Wells Avenue itself, dive bars and little restaurants are intermingled with tattoo parlors, classy restaurants, and a variety of stores catering to the Hispanic population. Diversity is the name of the game along Wells Avenue.

Parts of the Wells Avenue area still preserve the look and feel of the working class neighborhood it used to be. Most of the houses are small by today's McMansion standards, yet they still serve the needs of those who don't want to live in a stucco barn and maybe can't afford to even if they did.

Boundaries:

The Wells Avenue neighborhood is not specifically defined like subdivisions out in the burbs. Even so, boundaries are now generally recognized as encompassing the area described by the Wells Avenue Neighborhood Plan - Holcomb Avenue and S. Virginia Street on the west, Kietzke Lane on the east, Plumb Lane on the south, and Ryland Street on the north. The core business area district takes in a block or two on either side of Wells Avenue, between Vassar Street on the south and Ryland Street on the north.

Wells Avenue Neighborhood Plan:

The Wells Avenue Neighborhood Plan, implemented by the City of Reno, is intended to guide development of the area so as to preserve its character and stability over time. One of the most visible actions coming out of the plan is the upgrading of Wells Avenue itself, completed in the mid 2000s. Traffic lanes were narrowed to one in each directions, medians were installed, sidewalks were rebuilt, street parking was increased, and more.

Walk Score:

89 out of 100 - Very walkable. (Walk Score describes area amenities and estimates the walkability of a neighborhood using the address entered for its search.)

Real Estate Notes:

Anything I write about Wells Avenue neighborhood real estate will likely be outdated by the time you read it. Being an area in transition, interested home and commercial property shoppers will find a wide range of prices and property conditions. The obvious advice is for you to cruise the area and have a look, then engage the services of a competent real estate person familiar with how things work in this neighborhood.

Nearby Public Schools:

Booth Elementary School
1450 Stewart Street, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 333-5140.

Veterans Memorial Elementary School
1200 Locust Street, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 333-5090.

Bailey Charter Elementary School
210 Gentry Way, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 323-6767.

Vaughn Middle School
1200 Bresson Avenue, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 333-5160.

Wooster High School
1331 E. Plumb Lane, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 333-5100.

Reno High School
395 Booth Street, Reno, NV 89509. (775) 333-5050.

Rainshadow Community Charter High School
121 Vesta Street, Reno, NV 89502. (775) 322-5566.

Post Office:

Reno Main: 50 S. Virginia Street, Reno, NV 89501. (775) 851-1960. On the east side of S. Virginia Street, next to the Truckee River. It's the big art deco building designed by Reno architect Frederick DeLongchamps in 1932.

Calling the Cops:

To ask questions and request information, the non-emergency number for Reno PD is (775) 334-2121. For real, life-threatening police emergencies, always dial 911. That also goes for medical and fire emergencies. The main Reno police station is just north and west of Wells Avenue at 455 E. Second Street.

Getting Reno City Government Assistance:

The gatekeeper for city information and services requests is called Reno DIRECT. Phone (775) 334-2099 and you'll get a live human (though you might have to wait your turn).

Nearby Shopping:

The Wells Avenue neighborhood IS a shopping district, with many of the businesses represented by the Wells Avenue Merchants & Property Owners Association. As a quick look around will tell you, virtually everything is within walking and biking distance. In instances where a car is needed, you'll usually be able to find nearby parking. What you won't find are any big box stores, which adds to the charm of the area. Conspicuously absent, however, are any major supermarkets, but there are several within easy driving distance. The one big food store on Wells Avenue, King Ranch Market, is almost exclusively stocked with Hispanic fare. The Riverwalk District in downtown Reno is a few blocks to the west and the nearest big shopping center, Shopper's Square, is a short distance south.

Going to the Movies:

Century Theatres has the multiplex theaters market sewed up in Reno and Sparks. The closest screens to Wells Avenue are in the Riverwalk District at Sierra Street and the Truckee River - the Century Riverside 12. Of course, this theater is within walking distance of Wells Avenue.

Neighborhood Parks:

Stewart Park, at the corner of Wells Avenue and Stewart Street, is a small neighborhood park with grassy area, shade trees, and a playground. Pickett Park, between Ryland and Mill Streets, offers a big playground, large open grass field, and a rentable picnic shelter with restrooms. Wilkinson Park is in the eastern part of the neighborhood at 1201 E. Taylor Street, almost to Kietzke Lane. Last but not least, there is Wingfield Park on the Truckee River in downtown Reno.

Medical Facilities:

For life-threatening emergencies, always call 911.

There is a Health Access Washoe County (HAWC) clinic in the neighborhood at 1055 S. Wells Avenue. HAWC provides medical and dental care to northern Nevada residents who do not have access to health and dental care and cannot afford private clinics and doctors. A wide range of services is offered and charges are on a sliding fee scale. For more information and to make appointments, call (775) 329-6300.

There's more about the Wells Avenue Neighborhood.

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