What Are The 8 Safest Neighborhoods in Dayton, Ohio?

Mary Newman
by Mary Newman

When you think of Dayton, Ohio, does the image of single-family homes on large lots and historic buildings come to mind? If it doesn’t, it should – because much of Dayton is the idealistic city to raise a family and a little slight of Midwest paradise. It is also considered to have some of the best nightlife in all of the state!

When considering your move, however, make sure you pay attention to your neighborhood! McPherson, Pheasant Hill, and Oregon have some of the lowest rates of crime within the city, and provide a great suburban feel while still being close to the action. The Downtown neighborhood also ranks as one of the safest, and best, to live in Dayton – so if you’re looking for a home where you feel safe to walk to your favorite coffee shop or bookstore, this is the neighborhood for you!

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The Safest Neighborhoods in Dayton, Ohio

With this lower cost of living, however, comes danger. Dayton does have a very low crime index of just 4 – the safest? 100. This means Dayton is only safer than 4% of US cities. However, not all of Dayton is ‘dangerous’. Just like with any other place, there are safer, more secure areas, and more questionable areas.

Our top 8 safest neighborhoods, based on FBI crime statistics, include:

  • McPherson
  • Pheasant Hill
  • Oregon
  • Downtown
  • Webster Station
  • Patterson Park
  • Gateway
  • Forest Ridge-Quail Hollow

The Ultimate List: Dayton’s Safest Neighborhoods

If you’re considering moving to Dayton for work, for school, or just to relocate to Ohio, be sure that you pay attention to what neighborhood you’re moving into! We have listed the 8 safest neighborhoods in Dayton below. This list provides a good mix of downtown nightlife, shopping and historic districts, and more residential, traditional neighborhoods. No matter where you’re looking to live or what ‘vibe’ you want, Dayton can provide it – safely.

1. McPherson

  • Population: 399
  • Median Income: $40,202
  • Crime Per 100k: 2,087
  • Unemployment Rate: N/A

Self-proclaimed as “Dayton’s most neighborly neighborhood”, McPherson’s crime statistics seem to back it up – per 100k residents, this neighborhood is tied with the lowest crime rate on our list. McPherson is located along the Miami River and has the Great Miami River Recreational Trail running right through it. If you enjoy hiking, biking, or just being outdoors, this could be a great location for you.

In 1897 and again in 1913, the McPherson neighborhood flooded. Owners of these historical houses still standing often report finding ‘flood mud’ and other evidence of the disaster during current renovation projects. McPherson residents almost didn’t get that chance – the whole area was slated for commercial redevelopment and urban renewal, but in the late 1970s, it was declared a historic neighborhood.

There are several options for shopping, restaurants, and even daycare within this historic neighborhood, plus actual things to do. The Dayton Art Institute sits within McPherson itself, as well as McKinley Park. Of all the neighborhoods on our list, McPherson offers the most variety, and the best balance between nature and the outdoors, and nightlife and shopping.

2. Pheasant Hill

  • Population: 2,604
  • Median Income: $78,333
  • Crime Per 100k: 2,087
  • Unemployment Rate: 2%

On the outskirts of Dayton, between Huber Heights and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base sits Pheasant Hill. This small, residential neighborhood is tied with McPherson for the lowest crime rate per 100k residents. The median home value in this relatively exclusive neighborhood is much higher than the city’s average, sitting at $180,300 versus just $100k for the city itself.

The median household income is also higher than both the city’s average and the national average. Many would argue that this is the ‘richest’ neighborhood in the city. While these statistics don’t always lend themselves to a safer neighborhood, in this case, Pheasant Hill is incredibly safe!

There isn’t much for residents to do who don’t wish to leave their neighborhood. Homes have large lots and many cul-de-sacs for children to play in, but little shopping or dining can be done. Once you step outside the neighborhood, however, there are some options!

3. Oregon

  • Population: 1,302
  • Median Income: $17,019
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,004
  • Unemployment Rate: 3.8%

Yet another historic Dayton neighborhood makes the cut! Oregon has a higher unemployment rate and a much lower median income than our previous two, but crime rates are still lower. Oregon is a charming neighborhood for those who want that small-town Ohio feel, with large brick buildings lining streets that date back over 100 years.

There is plenty of shopping, restaurant choices, and cafes in Oregon for those looking to move to a neighborhood that ‘has it all’, including bars and nightlife. Many homes are older in Oregon, and you will find lots of smaller, tight streets and small lots. There are several apartment buildings in the Oregon neighborhood as well.

In 1974, several city blocks in Oregon were registered on the National Register of Historic Places. This isn’t the first area of Dayton that has been included in this register, and it’s something the city is very proud of.

4. Downtown

  • Population: 1,658
  • Median Income: $26,157
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,059
  • Unemployment Rate: 4.8%

Believe it or not, the Downtown neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio comes in as one of the safest places to live in the city! Revitalization of the Downtown area began in the mid-1990s, and over $2 billion in total has been put back into the community, including residential projects, transportation, health, and more. Downtown Dayton has also become more popular with up-and-coming tech companies, and this should continue in the next ten years as the city offers more benefits to companies willing to move and grow in Dayton.

The Downtown neighborhood is also home to the Sinclair Community College, as well as the University of Dayton. Sinclair is the largest community college at a single location in the entire state, and one of the largest in the country. Because of such a vibrant, young influence, there is plenty to both see and do in the downtown area. Lots of bars, restaurants, and shops have popped up in the last 10 years.

For arts and history, the Downtown neighborhood boasts the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, the Dayton Ballet, the Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center, and the Dayton Opera. Dayton Ballet is one of the oldest professional dance companies within the United State, and the Dayton Ballet School is one of the oldest in the country.

5. Webster Station

  • Population: 717
  • Median Income: $26,157
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,059
  • Unemployment Rate: 4.8%

Webster Station is yet another historical neighborhood in Dayton – there are 9 total! The area was completely empty until 1843, when the city purchased land and began development. Webster Station is home to Day Air Ballpark, a minor league baseball stadium. The Dayton Dragons play there, an affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds. Dayton residents love the Dragons, too – in 2011 the Dragons broke the all-time professional sports record for most consecutive sellouts. 815 games total were sold out, in a row!

There is plenty to do in Webster Station beyond minor league baseball, though. Similar to the Downtown neighborhood, Webster Station has plenty of shopping, cafes, and restaurants for those living in the area. Webster Station is home to the 2nd Street Market, a great source for locally grown food and artisan goods.

Much of the housing in Webster Station comes from modern-style lofts, like Delco Lofts, and apartment buildings. There are, however, single-family homes in the area, giving plenty of variety no matter your family size or expectations.

6. Patterson Park

  • Population: 1,469
  • Median Income: $65,151
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,075
  • Unemployment Rate: 3.7%

The Patterson Park neighborhood in Dayton is a heavily residential area outside of downtown, but that doesn’t mean it’s boring. There are still food and shopping choices for residents, including a local pizza restaurant and comic book store, as well as several bars. The Jane Newcom Park is also within the neighborhood, allowing residents to go for a walk, a job with their dog, and more.

Just outside of Patterson Park is an Amazon Logistics warehouse, where many of the residents work. You can see this reflected in the higher median income than some of our previous neighborhoods. Patterson Park is a beautiful neighborhood, and residents say it is very walkable. Residents take care of their lawns, and it is a well-maintained area.

This neighborhood regularly ranks not only as one of the safest, but as one of the best to live in overall. These things include statistics like housing value, happiness, employment rates, and more. This makes Patterson Park particularly appealing to a large number of people.

7. Gateway

  • Population: 1,418
  • Median Income: $67,218
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,776
  • Unemployment Rate: 1.3%

The Gateway neighborhood in Dayton is an interesting one, as it encompasses a long, skinny section of land just below interstate 4. Much of the neighborhood is water – Eastwood Lake, Blue Lake, and Mad River – and the Eastwood Metropark itself. Despite this, there are still some homes, making the Gateway neighborhood perfect for those who want to spend their summer days outdoors.

Due to the layout and size of Gateway, most residents will need to leave the neighborhood for the basics, like groceries, dining out, or shopping. There are a small handful of options, but not enough to sustain a family.

Gateway is mostly filled with young professionals and young families, and has what is considered a ‘sparse urban’ feel due to the larger lot sizes of homes and variety of parks and recreation.

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8. Forest Ridge-Quail Hollow

  • Population: 3,423
  • Median Income: $76,586
  • Crime Per 100k: 3,938
  • Unemployment Rate: 8.7%

The Forest Ridge-Quail Hollow neighborhood of Dayton is truly a small town residential area at its finest. Homes are spaced close enough that you know your neighbors, but far enough way you can’t see into their houses. A local grocery store sits conveniently within the neighborhood, along with plenty of dining options and even some shopping areas.

While Forest Ridge-Quail Hollow does have the highest rate of crime per 100k residents on our list, it is also much larger population-wise than most of our other neighborhoods. Despite having a high unemployment rate (over 2% higher than the national average!), the median household income is still well over the national average.

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Mary Newman
Mary Newman

Mary Newman thought that home improvement was all painting and putting down throw rugs... until she bought a fixer upper, and realized it's so much more. With a passion for helping others NOT make the mistakes she did, Mary seeks to always improve her home - and yours, too!

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