What do we mean by West Boca, or West Boca Raton, Florida? Let’s start with geography.
Greater Boca Raton is, roughly, a rectangle bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the east, the Loxahatchee Refuge (part of the Everglades) on the west, Delray Beach (or greater Delray Beach, which is a similar conversation) on the north, and Broward County to the south (including Deerfield Beach and Parkland).
On the right, tinged red, is what could be called East Boca. In the middle, slightly yellowed, is Central Boca. And to the left, bluish, is West Boca.
The location of the lines is a bit casual. Dividing east and central we have used Military Trail. We often use Interstate 95, or perhaps other north-south landmarks like the El Rio Trail/Canal to the east of Florida Atlantic University. Regarding East Boca it should also be noted that the City of Highland Beach is included in our map, but the folks there may well consider themselves separate.
East Boca is also generally associated with the City of Boca Raton, but the city has grown so much that it now encompasses quite a bit of Central Boca and areas that some might even call West Boca. Here’s a map from the city website:
The north-south line dividing West Boca and Central Boca is also a challenge. Long-time residents of East Boca may think of everything west of El Rio Canal as West Boca. We have seen references to the Town Center Mall or Boca Del Mar as being in West Boca. But looking at our map of greater Boca, that doesn’t really make sense nowadays.
We have chosen Florida’s Turnpike as the divider. An argument could certainly be made for Jog/Powerline Road, which would then include the large Boca West community. But we think the Turnpike makes for a more sensible division. The Turnpike and the canal that runs with it really separate the areas that are on either side of it (similar to how I-95 separates East and Central Boca). By contrast, neighborhoods on either side of Jog/Powerline feel like they’re the same place. Jog is also a short distance from Military Trail and the two feel like part of the same area.
What’s in West Boca?
The main feature is residential neighborhoods, including gated and ungated communities and most with significant homeowners associations. Some of the communities have golf courses and/or country clubs, including Stonebridge, Boca Woods, Boca Greens, and Boca Lago. The most notorious neighborhood, at least within West Boca, is an area called Sandalfoot which is jokingly nicknamed Scandalfoot. Despite its negative reputation, there’s a lot of good stuff in the Sandalfoot area, including the very popular Western Beef supermarket. But it does seem like crime reports in West Boca mention Sandalfoot out of proportion to its population.
Schools: West Boca High on the west end of Glades Road, Olympic Heights High on Lyons north of Glades, Loggers Run Middle, Eagles Landing Middle, several elementary schools and some private schools. Spanish River High and Omni Middle in Central Boca serve some students who live in West Boca. The most notable private school in West Boca is probably Boca International Prep, but there are others.
Parks: The biggest is South County Regional Park, just north of West Boca High and covering a large area including a golf course, athletic fields, an amphitheater, a water park, a nature center and more. There are a number of smaller parks.
Main roads: The major north-south roads are State Route 7 (more commonly known as US-441 or just 441) and Lyons Road. East-west roads include (from north to south) Clint Moore, Yamato, Glades, Palmetto Park, and SW 18th Street. Glades is by far the busiest road and some locals avoid it when traveling east by taking either Yamato or Palmetto. Glades has an entrance/exit for the Florida Turnpike, which further slows east-west traffic.
Shopping: There are many plazas mainly along Glades and/or 441. That intersection has four plazas with a Home Depot, a Publix supermarket, an upscale but smaller Fresh Market supermarket, and many other stores, banks and restaurants. Just to the south closer to Palmetto there’s a Target in one large plaza and a Lowe’s almost by itself. The stretch of Glades from Lyons to the Turnpike is also loaded with commercial activity and there are a few other hotspots. A short drive south on 441 into Parkland/Coconut Creek provides access to large Walmart a BJ’s Wholesale Club and a few more plazas. We’ve tried to capture some of that in our page on West Boca Shopping. But it needs work.
Restaurants: There are many restaurants in and near West Boca, with a fairly broad variety of ethnic choices. See our West Boca Restaurant Reviews category and our out-of-date summary of West Boca Restaurants. One thing we’re surprisingly missing is Indian food, with the nearest choices about 10 miles away.
Other notable players in West Boca include:
There is also a West Boca Community Council, which serves to coordinate the various homeowners associations.