Just 13 miles southeast of Seattle, Renton is located along the shore of Lake Washington in the Puget Sound region. Renton is in King County, which has recently been ranked among the 100 highest-income counties in the United States by the U.S. Census Bureau. The population of Renton enjoys majestic views of the Cascade Mountains, the Olympic Mountains, and Mount Rainier. Renton boasts an extensive network of beautiful mountain trails, as well as access to nearby waterfront activities. The temperatures range from mild in the summer months to cold during the winter.
The original inhabitants of Renton were the Duwamish Native American nation, whose most famous chief was Chief Seattle. Pioneers from the eastern United States established settlements during the 1850s, and in 1873 the Renton Coal Company was founded. In 1901, Renton was incorporated as a city.
Renton is a quiet community that is part of the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metropolitan area. It is close to three major highways-Interstate 5, Interstate 405, and State Route 167-which is convenient for residents who commute to Seattle for work, or for those who want to go to the city for shopping or a night on the town.
Since the mid-1990s, the city of Renton has fought the threat of urban decay by working to revitalize its downtown neighborhoods. It has established both public and private programs to boost community development. These projects include a transit center that is in partnership with King County Metro Transit, as well as the construction of several mixed-use residential and retail buildings near the transit center. These buildings include Revo 225, Burnet Station, and Metropolitan Place. Located within these developing communities are event centers such as the Piazza and the Pavilion Building. These development projects have attracted restaurants and other businesses to the area.
The majority of Renton's residents are renters. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in Renton are Newcastle and Maplewood. Both of these neighborhoods cater to upwardly mobile, urban sophisticates who work in executive or managerial fields. Maplewood features primarily high-rise apartment buildings, and Newcastle is composed of mainly single-family homes.
When the city of Renton was first founded, coal mining and timber processing were the main staples of its industry. During World War II, Boeing built a factory there to produce the B-29 Superfortress. That factory is still in operation in today, producing about 730 aircraft each year. In addition to the original Renton factory, Boeing has also established three of its other business divisions there: Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Boeing Capital Corporation, and the Shared Services Group. Boeing is the largest employer in Renton.
Other companies in Renton include:
The city of Renton boasts numerous public parks, an extensive system of hiking trails, hundreds of acres of public open space, an 18-hole public golf course, lakefront beaches, and a public boat launch.
There are also many natural habitat areas that offer majestic views, including the Black River Riparian Forest, May Creek Natural Area, Renton Wetlands, Honey Creek Natural Area, the Springbrook Watershed, and Panther Creek Wetlands. The Cascade Mountains and Mount Rainier offer outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking, and skiing, as well as gorgeous views.
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