North Park, San Diego: The Rewards of ‘Walkability’

In September 2019, there were 27 single-family detached homes on the market in North Park, at a median sales price of $675,000. There were also 22 single-family attached homes available, with a median price of $378,000.

In 2018, there were 33 detached single-family homes for sale, with a median price of $695,000, and 20 attached single-family homes with a median price of $419,500, according to the North San Diego County Association of Realtors.

For renters, studios start in the low $1,000s; two-bedroom apartments run about $2,200 a month; and single-family detached homes can be found for around $3,000 to $5,000 a month.

Credit…Sandy Huffaker for The New York Times

With its mustachioed locals, third-wave coffee shops and vegan tacos, North Park is a nexus of San Diego hipsterdom. Its population skews young and tattooed, and its business drags are packed with craft breweries, vintage clothing shops and boutiques offering terrariums and sans-serif stationery. It’s walkable, liberal and just a tiny bit gritty.

But Scott DeMoss, 52, a local realtor and longtime North Park resident, takes the long view.

“Is there hipster culture here? Sure,” he said. “If you’re looking for a really good beer selection or phenomenal coffee, that’s all here in North Park, and it’s hipsters who were the first ones to pay for it. But you need to look more closely. There’s a diverse and aware community here, of all kinds of people.”

North Park is about four miles from downtown San Diego, with Balboa Park separating them, and it was only in the late 1980s, after developers began pouring money into revitalizing San Diego’s city center, that the tide of refurbishment crept into the neighborhood. Many of the area’s Craftsman-style and Spanish Revival homes were rehabbed in the following years. Later, new businesses, live-music venues and restaurants moved into 30th Street and University Avenue, its two main drags.

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