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Campus area is pretty safe. Lots of students live near campus or downtown (10 mins away on lrt train). Years 1 and 2 its really nice since you don't have a commute to classes. Yrs 3 and 4 it matters less since you'll be at sites all over the city for various rotations and will likely do rural and even out of city,  out of province electives. But yes, living near campus is what a lot of students in all 4 years do mainly for convenience.

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I have lived close to downtown in the Oliver neighborhood for ~7 years while attending UofA. It takes me 15 mins to bus, 30 mins to LRT (buses were down for 2 years), & 15 mins to bike. Neither my fiancé or I have had any encounters that made us feel unsafe. Our car got broken into once a few years back, but other than that we really haven't had any issues.

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