Portland Real Estate Experts

Banks, Oregon Real Estate Guide


The City of Banks lies in the northern edge of the wine-rich Tualatin Valley, just west of Portland and Beaverton in Washington County. The current population of more than 1,450 residents make the town of Banks a true community. Nestled in Oregon Wine Country, between the Cascade Mountains and the Oregon Coast Range, Banks strives to be an environmentally-sensitive city respectful of the nearby farms and forest. Banks offers opportunities for both business and pleasure, convenitently located halfway between the picturesque Oregon Coast and the Portland metropolis. Washington County has seen tremendous growth in the past few decades. High-tech industries began locating in the eastern part of the county as early as the 1950s, and today more than half of Oregon's 53,000 high-tech jobs are located there. Following the increase in jobs, there was an increase in both housing and service industries, resulting in a great deal of new development. Western Washington County, however, remains rural and picturesque with the major economic base stemming from agriculture and some logging. This small-town rural atmosphere is the perfect place to raise a family while staying within a ten minute commute to the high-tech industries of Washington County. Arbor Village is a community located in Banks with an independent Homeowners Association and beautiful park. With three golf courses, antique and craft shops, a public library, and several restaurants located within the city limits, Banks has something for everyone for the relaxing life of the Oregon countryside.


Early American pioneers settled in Banks around 1840 using Government donation land claims of 640 acres each. The original land claim held by Peyton Wilkes is now the site of the town of Banks, Oregon. Peyton Wilkes chose the west fork of Dairy Creek because the nearby plentiful oak trees supplied the tanbark he needed for his tanner's trade.  White Oak trees are native to the valleys of western Washington County, and are are considered the king of all western oaks. By the 1860s, a small community had formed around the Wilkes property and, appropriately, it was called "Wilkes". In the 1890's the Wilkes' children divided the remaining 160 acres and sold it to the Schulmerich family and the Banks family, who were dairy farmers. A Post Office was established in the area on January 21, 1902, named after brothers John and Robert Banks, who owned land next to the Union Point Cemetery on Banks Road and were instrumental in developing Banks next to the new Railroad built throughout the area. Banks' historic United Methodist Church (originally known as the community church) was started in 1908, built by Mike Schrammel and Phil Parmley and dedicated in 1909. By 1920, Banks looked like many other small Oregon pioneer towns, with a less than impressive building stock and dirt roads, but its strong community made it a good place to live. The town was incorportated in 1921, with a population of 75 residents. In 1910, 100 Japanese families came to Banks and started raising strawberries. By 1950, acreage had grown to where the Banks 1950 Bar-B-Q program reported that 4,000 tons of berries were handled annually in Banks.


The city of Banks is located between U.S. Route 26 (Sunset Highway) and State Highway 6 (Wilson River Highway), Banks offers quick access to the coastal beaches and many hiking and camping opportunities in the Tillamook State Forest and the Clatsop State Forest. Banks is located just minutes away from L.L. "Stub" Stewart State Park.

If you're interested in Banks, Oregon Real Estate, land and homes for sale in Banks, or have any questions about relocating to Portland and Portland area suburbs, don't hesitate to contact the McDonald Group Realtors, your guide to Suburban Portland Real Estate.

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Banks has its own school district with three schools, Banks Elementary School, Banks Junior High School, and Banks High School. There is also the local Christian Academy, which lies on the outskirts of town, near the town of Buxton. Banks Elementary serves children grades K-6, with three teachers per grade. In addition, the school promotes a special education program, a Title 1 reading program, and a Jump Start program. Banks Junior High was rated exceptional for their 2008-09 school year, an honor received by approximately 150 Oregon schools.The Oregon Department of Energy announced that Banks School District will receive $52,345.20 in federal funds for an energy-efficient lighting project. The project is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act awarded through the State Energy Program.

The Banks Public Library is a member of the Washington County Cooperative Library Service, and offers its cardholders access to more than 1.6 million items. Borrow books, magazines, music, audio books, DVDs, language tapes, Spanish language materials and more. Visit the library catalog for more information.


The City of Banks operates and maintains two lush and beautiful City Parks, Greenville City Park (located in the Arbor Village Subdivision) and Log Cabin Park, located at 290 S. Main Street.

Banks-Vernonia State Trail - This was the first “rails-to-trails” state park built in Oregon. It is built on an abandoned railroad bed that stretches 21 miles from the town of Banks to the city of Vernonia. The trail includes an eight-foot wide hiking and bicycle trail paralleled by a four-foot wide horse trail. The gentle grade allows hikers, bicyclists, equestrians and people of all abilities to enjoy the scenic mountains, fields and forests of Washington and Columbia counties.

L.L. Stub Stewart State Park is located just seven miles NW of Banks on Highway 47. It is the first overnight camping state park built in Oregon over 30 plus years. The Banks-Vernonia State Trail runs through Stub Stewart State Park. Besides the Banks-Vernonia trail, there are 17 miles of walking and horse trails built within Stub Stewart State Park. Camping sites with horse corals and RVcamping.

Wine Country Getaways: It was in the beautiful, fertile hills a few minutes from Banks, Oregon that Charles Coury first planted Oregon's famous pinot grapes. The Banks area's boutique wineries are still very welcoming and you can often chat with the winemaker to learn the mystique of pinot noir.

Hagg Lake: This 1,200-acre reservoir is nestled in the foothills of the Coast Range, just southwest of Banks, and is perfect for fishing, hiking, boating, and viewing wildlife. The lake reaches depths of over 100 feet and is well-stocked with rainbow trout, some reaching 7 pounds. Small-mouth bass and brown bullhead are also present. Hagg Lake is surrounded by 15 miles of biking and hiking trails, where you might encounter the elk, deer, or coyote that call these woods home. The mixture of habitats around Hagg Lake also attracts a variety of bird life, including nesting pairs of bald eagles and ospreys.

The Intertwine: The Intertwine is the connected network of parks, trails and natural areas in the Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington region. The Intertwine reflects our region’s passion for quality of life by encouraging recreation, connection to nature, and active transportation like walking, running and biking. As our urban areas grow denser, The Intertwine promotes the health and happiness we, as citizens of the Pacific Northwest, so dearly value.


Main Street Pizza Co. - 680 S Main St. Banks, OR 97106 - Main Street Pizza Co is a great old-school pizza place. The atmosphere is relaxed and casual, and it will remind you of the independent pizza joints of the good old days. They have sports on the tv to watch while you eat, and they have great sandwiches and a small salad bar.

Oriental Garden - 600 Main St. Banks, OR 97106 - Best Chinese food in the Portland suburbs. After relocating from McMinnville, they've maintained thair reputation of serving up great food with fresh, quality ingredients...cooked to order! And, oddly enough, they have really great Halibut Fish and Chips. Who knew? Great food, great atmosphere, great prices. What more do you need?

SakéOne - 820 Elm St Forest Grove, OR 97116 - Saké One is the United States’ most renowned kura, or saké brewery. Its Japanese parent company established Saké One in Forest Grove near Portland following a nationwide search for the purest groundwater. This busy facility welcomes visitors curious to learn how Japan’s clear brew is created from nothing more than rice and water. After a short tour, visitors partake of low-cost tastings of Saké One’s toothsome products, including coconut-lemongrass flavored saké. Saké One’s gift shop sells every saké variety produced here plus apparel, exotic chocolates, and ceramic saké cups.

Maggie's Buns - 2007 21st Ave Forest Grove, OR 97116

Izgara Bar & Grill - 2036 B Main St Forest Grove, OR 97116

Scotties Drive In - 1702 Pacific Ave Forest Grove, OR 97116

Phil's 1500 Subs - 2834 Pacific Ave, Ste D Forest Grove, OR 97116


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