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PALO ALTO

neighborhood guide

PALO ALTO
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In November 1769, nearly seven years before the United States declared independence, El Palo Alto (Spanish for the tall stick), a camp surrounding a 1,000 yearold redwood tree on the San Francisquito Creek, was discovered by Gaspar de Portol. Although Portols 63-man expedition didnt come across gold, they discovered the city that would give birth to the Silicon Valley nearly 170 years laterwhere leaders of the tech world turned silicon into gold. Alto Research Center in 1973. Palo Alto continues to be a mecca to the tech world and capital of Silicon Valley today. Despite its reputation as a high-tech city (the first city in the U.S. to have its own URL address, birthplace of Silicon Valley, etc.), Palo Alto does have a number of significant natural habitats. Foothills Park, a perfect example of the abundance of nature in Palo Alto, contains 1,400 acres of rugged chaparral, woodlands, trails, streams, a lake for fishing and boating, camping grounds, and wildlife including deer and coyotes.

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Leland Stanford established the city of Palo Alto in 1894 after founding Stanford University. Palo Alto became a mostly blue-collar community, but demographics have rapidly changed in recent decades; the city hosts a diverse, largely wealthy and well-educated population with many celebrity residents, from Mark Zuckerberg to James Franco. The late Steve Jobs lived in an Old Palo Alto home for the last thirty years of his life. Technology has had a profound effect on the community and economy of Palo Alto, starting with Hewlett-Packards first invention in 1939, then the invention of the first graphical user interface computer and mouse at Xerox Palo

PearsonArastradero Preserve
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For local government information, business regulations, job opportunities, and more in Palo Alto visit cityofpaloalto.org.

Foothills Park

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Palo Alto Hills Green Acres Barron Park South Palo Alto Midtown Ventura College Terrace 8 9 10 11 12 13 Old Palo Alto Green Gables Community Center Crescent Park Professorville Downtown

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living in...

PALO ALTO
MEDIAN HOME VALUES IN PALO ALTO
$2,000,000 $1,700,000 $1,400,000 $1,100,000 $800,000

education

Median Home Value in 2002

$925,000

DOUBLED
in the past decade.
Median Home Value in 2012

Median home values in Palo Alto have nearly

Education is at the core of Palo Alto, with Stanford University as its original landmark. More than 40% of Palo Altos residents over the age of 25 have a graduate degree or better. 95% of Palo Alto Unified School Districts graduates go on to attend college. The Palo Alto Unified School District is known for its top-ranked schools, with Palo Alto High

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2012 (YTD)

$1,703,500

School ranking #85 out of 18,000 public schools in US News. Overall, PAUSD students consistently rank in the top percentiles compared with statewide and national standardized testing scores. Additionally, there are 16 private schools within the citys limits, including the Bay Areas oldest Chinese school, The Palo Alto Chinese School.

DUVENECK ADDISON

desirable

Once a blue-collar community with an agrarian-based economy, Palo Alto is now the economic focal point of the Silicon Valley. With beautiful tree-lined streets, friendly neighbors, eclectic architecture, and a Mediterranean climate, it may come as no surprise that Palo Alto is one of the most desirable communities in the Bay Area. Corporate headquarters for companies like HewlettPackard, Tesla Motors, and PayPal are located in Palo Alto; Facebook, Google, and Apple headquarters are just minutes away. Today, Palo Altans are mostly wealthy and highly educated. With a median household income 108.6% higher than the national av-

erage, residents here enjoy a high quality of life. In the past six years, Palo Alto has made CNNs Best Places to Live list four times. Palo Altos constant rising status has lead to rising home values that just wont stop. In fact, there has never been a better time to be a homeowner in Palo Alto. In the last decade alone, home values have nearly doubled from the median value of $925,000 in 2002 to $1,703,500 in 2012. Median home values are up 119% from the 2011 values, rising $278,500 from $1,425,000 to $1,703,500 in 2012, showing us that there is no stopping the appreciation of home value in this growing community, making a home in Palo Alto the perfect investment.

HAYS PALO ALTO HS DS JORDAN MS OHLONE PALO VERDE CARMELO ESCONDIDO NIXON FAIRMEADOW JLS STANFORD MS HOOVER

BARRON PARK BRIONES GUNN HS TERMAN MS

PALO ALTO UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT


ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS Addison Elementary School Barron Park Elementary School Juana Briones Elementary School Duveneck Elementary School El Carmelo Elementary School Escondido Elementary School Fairmeadow Elementary School Walter Hays Elementary School

Hoover Elementary School Lucille Nixon Elementary School Ohlone Elementary School Palo Verde Elementary School MIDDLE SCHOOLS Jane Lanthrop Stanford Middle School David Starr Jordan Middle School Terman Middle School

HIGH SCHOOLS Henry M. Gunn High School Palo Alto High School For more information on the Palo Alto Unified School Districts schools, programs, and district boundaries, visit www.PAUSD.org

district 1

GREEN ACRES
PALO ALTO HILLS
78 households, Palo Alto Hills is a tightknit community that is held together by the Palo Alto Hills Neighborhood Association, which plans events to keep neighbors social. The Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club hosts many events for the neighbors and is located at the center of the neighborhood. Residents enjoy the open spaces an d n a t u r e that surround them by taking advantage of the biking, hiking, and horseback riding trails at PearsonArastradero Preserve, or trailing and fishing at Foothills Park. This safe and cozy neighborhood is home to a tight-knit and sociable community that is sought-after by many prospective buyers. With proximity to top-ranked public and private grade schools, many families move to Green Acres to raise their children and provide them with a good education. Some of the developments original residents still live in Green Acres which, according to them, hasnt lost its charm or neighborly

district 2

get to know...
SCHOOLS RECREATION

Surrounded by oak trees, hills, and nature, Palo Alto Hills is a quiet and isolated neighborhood where residents take refuge after a hectic day at work. Just driving up the serene and winding roads leading to Palo Alto Hills is relaxing. With only

atmosphere. The Green Acres Improvement Association has been active since 1952 and meets with neighbors quarterly to maintain the neighborhood and foster good community relations. Green Acres welcomes new neighbors and encourages them to remain active in the community with annual holiday parties, summer ice cream socials, and potlucks each fall.

whats in Green Acres?


SCHOOLS
Juana Briones Elementary School Terman Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School
Pearson-Arastradero Reserve and Foothills Park are two of the incredible recreational areas residents have convenient access to.

Lucille Nixon Elementary School Terman Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School Palo Alto Hills Golf & Country Club Pearson-Arastradero Preserves Foothills Park Westwind Riding Institute Portola Vineyards Rosotti Field www.PAHNA.org

SHOPPING

RECREATION

El Camino Real San Antonio Shopping Center Downtown Los Altos

Juana Briones Park Terman Park Mitchell Park Library Branch

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
Contact: Alice Sklar a2sklar@aol.com

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION

(Top Left) Juana Briones Park is one of the popular parks in the Green Acres neighborhood. Juana Briones was an early settler of the Bay Area and daughter of one of the original explorers who discovered Palo Alto with Gaspar de Portol. North Beach in San Francisco was originally called Playa de Juana Briones. (Bottom Left) A newer home in the Green Acres neighborhood of Palo Alto.

district 3

get to know...
SCHOOLS
Barron Park Elementary School Terman Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School

barron park
ENTERTAINMENT & DINING
Fuki-Sushi (ZAGAT) Trader Vics (ZAGAT) Driftwood Deli Cubberley Ballroom

RECREATION

Cornelis Bol Park Juana Briones Park Bol Park Bike Path

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
Barron Park Association www.BPAonline.org

Neighborhoods with a rural, rancher vibe are hard to come across in the Bay Area, but Palo Altos Barron Park has managed to hold onto its country charm. Seemingly frozen in time, Barron Park takes you back to simpler days, where a neighbor will gladly lend you a cup of sugar and children play on the streets until sundown. This neighborhood is only a five minute drive from Stanford University and is located near restaurants that Palo Altans rave about. Many of Barron Parks modest homes have two car garages and room for two more cars in their driveways. In recent years, homeowners and remodeled and rebuilt their older and more traditional homes, giving the neighborhood a new flair. Multiple public schools are conveniently located within walking and biking distance, taking a load off of parents busy schedules. Neighborhood children flock to Bol Park to feed the stabled donkeys, Perry and Miner 49er; Perry was the inspiration for Donkeys character in Dreamworks Shrek films.

BARRON 3 PARK

did you know...?: Perry, one of the stabled donkeys at Bol Park, was the inspiration for the character Donkey in the Shrek films.

SOUTH PALO ALTO

district 4

south palo alto california modern

In 1900, Joseph Eichler, one of the most influential architects of the mid-20th century, was born in a South Palo Alto home that predates the developments he later designed and built in the same neighborhood. South Palo Alto is dominated by Eichler homes, specifically the Fairmeadow and Greenmeadow developments, which take neighbors and bypassers through a time warp back to the 1950s and 60s. The iconic

homes of Greenmeadow, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, are protected by the city of Palo Alto from remodels and second story expansions. Many of the neighborhoods in South Palo Alto were designed with culde-sacs, allowing children to be able to play outside safely. The exceptional schools in the South Palo Alto neighborhood are within walking and biking distance for children.

During the late 1950s and 60s, Joseph Eichlers contemporary architecture, known as the California Modern dominated suburban landscape across the country. These homes combined indoor living with outdoor elements, blending the two worlds with large glass walls and windows, as well as low ceilings. Eichlers simple homes inspired Apple founder Steve Jobs. In Walter Isaacsons Steve Jobs, Jobs is quoted saying, Eichler did a great thing...I love when you can bring really great design and simple capability to something that doesnt cost much. This model provided was the original vision for Apple.

whats in South Palo Alto?


SCHOOLS
Fairmeadow Elementary School Herbert Hoover Elementary School Ohlone Elementary School Palo Verde Elementary School Jane Lanthrop Stanford Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School

RECREATION

whats in South Palo Alto?


NEARBY PLACES
California Avenue Midtown Shopping Center San Antonio Shopping Center Crossings Cafe and Organic Bakery

Mitchell Park Robles Park Ramos Park Charleston Meadow Cubberley Community Center Hoover Kids Club

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS

Greenmeadow Association www.Greenmeadow.org Charleston Meadows Association cmaboard@googlegroups.com Meadow Park Neighborhood Association cathy_swan@excite.com

district 5

district 6

Bounded by the US-101, Oregon Expressway, and Alma Street, Midway is an exclusively residential neighborhood that offers an easy commute to and from

MIDTOWN VENTURA
work, whether that be in Palo Alto or elsewhere in the Silicon Valley or Bay Area. This neighborhood is mostly middle-class and features modest, but classic homes. Suburban convenience comes at a low price in Midtown with a commercial concentration, Midtown Shopping Center, including a drugstore and supermarket nearby.

get to know...
SCHOOLS
El Carmelo Elementary School Jane Lanthrop Stanford Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School Palo Alto High School

NEAR MIDTOWN

Palo Altos Ventura district is an affordable, up-and-coming neighborhood with a vibrant nightlife. Condos outnumber homes here, and sometimes heavy traffic on the El Camino Real and Oregon Expressway can make commuting difficult. Residents say that despite these problems they enjoy their humble neighborhood. Ventura and its schools are ethnically and culturally diverse, making this

neighborhood a perfect location for families to raise and expose their children to other cultures. The majority of the homes have post-war architecture, but in recent years neighbors have begun to remodel and rebuild their homes. Ventura is in close proximity to California Avenue for shopping at local boutiques and dining at Palo Altos Michelin Star restaurant, Baum.

RECREATION

Cinearts Palo Alto Square Midtown Shopping Center California Avenue El Carmelo Kids Club

Palo Alto Baylands Park Greer Park Hoover Park Stanford-Palo Alto Playing Fields

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
Midtown Residents Association www.MidtownResidents.org midtownnews@att.net

get to know...
SCHOOLS
El Carmelo Elementary School Terman Middle School Henry M. Gunn High School

ENTERTAINMENT
Baum (MICHELIN) 3 Gs Cafe California Avenue

RECREATION
Boulware Park Robles Park

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION

Ventura N.A. www. cyberstars.com/ neighborhood.html

COLLEGE TERRACE
Two College Terrace homes Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg rented prior to purchasing a Crescent Park home in 2011.

district 7

In 1887 Alexander Gordon purchased a 120-acre parcel of land from San Mateo County and named the streets after prestigious universities, giving birth to College Terrace. The neighborhoods wide streets, eclectic mix of architectural styles, and strong sense of community make College Terrace desirable to residents. Neighbors enjoy block parties throughout the summer at Dartmouth Park and

organize annual Easter egg hunts for the children. Although homes are modest in comparison to other neighborhoods, College Terrace is considered to be one of Palo Altos hottest neighborhoods, and was home to Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg until May 2011. Many tenured and high-level Stanford employees live in College Terrace.

get to know...
SCHOOLS
Hays Elementary School Addison Elementary School David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

RECREATION

get to know...
SCHOOLS
Escondido Elementary School David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

Gamble Gardens Jerry Bowden Park

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION

RECREATION

Old Palo Alto Neighborhood Association www.groups.google.com/group/opana_ news

Werry Park (Dartmouth Park) Weisshaar Park Mayfield Park Cameron Park

Located in a central area of Palo Alto, Old Palo Alto is a commuters dream with easy access to Downtown, Midtown, and California Avenue. Local celebrities love this vibrant and historic neighborhood which features a conglomeration of architectural styles. Old Palo Altos family-friendly environment draws comparisons to Midwestern communities. Although the neighborhood holds on to a strong sense of community, neighbors dont cling to a single neighborhood identity, but block-to-block identities. At the heart of Old Palo Alto is the citys crown jewel, Gamble Garden, a 2.5 acre public garden surrounding a beautiful 1902 Colonial Revival estate.

OLD PALO ALTO

district 8

ENTERTAINMENT
California Avenue

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION

College Terrace Resdidents Association www.CTRA.org / board@CTRA.org

district 9

Wide tree-lined streets and contemporary Eichler and ranch-style homes attracted many World War II veterans to Green Gables when development began immediately after the war. This large, yet quiet, neighborhood is divided into several different developments by which locals refer to as:

GREEN GABLES
St. Francis is in such close proximity to Crescent Park that the luxurious homes slowly blend in with the more average tract homes of the area. Embarcadero Oaks is lined with sycamore trees and classic homes, and each holiday season the neighborhood transforms one of its main streets, Fulton Street, into a spectacular Christmas display. Triple El is dominated by Eichler homes that blend both indoor and outdoor living with contemporary architecture. Residents enjoy exploring the Baylands Nature Preserve, jog and bike on Embarcadero Road, and hit the links at Palo Alto Municipal Golf Course.

district 10

Triple El Embarcadero Oaks Garland Leland Manor Duveneck/St. Francis


Each of these subdistricts are distinct from one another; Duveneck/

Community Center lives up and stays true to its name. With community and family at its core, neighbors of Community Center organize annual block parties, neighborhood book clubs and remain socially active. Residents are keen to stop and talk to others while they are jogging, biking, or walking their dogs. Children are a huge part of Community Center; with Rinconada Park as the neighborhoods focal point, children enjoy convenient access to the Childrens Theatre, Junior Museum and Zoo, Walter Hays Kids Club, Childrens Library, Girl Scout House, as well as nine tennis courts, lap and recreational pools, and a redwood grove all in one area.

COMMUNITY CENTER

get to know...
SCHOOLS

get to know...
SCHOOLS
Duveneck Elementary Walter Hays Elementary David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

Addison Elementary Walter Hays Elementary David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS

RECREATION NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS

Rinconada Park Junior Museum and Zoo Childrens Library

Community Center Neighbors Association contact: rick@skylonda.com pma94301@comcast.net

RECREATION

Eleanor Pardee Park Greer Park

Duveneck/St. Francis karenwhite4@sbcglobal.net Leland Manor kathleen.hughes@sbcglobal.net

district 11

RECREATION SCHOOLS
Duveneck Elementary Addison Elementary David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

Eleanor Pardee Park Palo Alto Demonstration Garden Hopkins Creekside Park

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get to know...
NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
Crescent Park Neighborhood Association 1005 University Ave. Palo Alto, 94301 norman.beamer@ropesgray.com.

crescent park

CRESCENT PARK
Crescent Park is part of the Pantheon of Palo Altan neighborhoods, with stately and elegant homes and beautiful magnolias lining the streets along San Francisquito Creek. Many of the homes in Crescent Park were built in the 1920s and 30s on larger than average lots, some larger than 20,000 square feet. As this neighborhood lies on the San Francisquito Creek, homeowners are required to purchase flood insurance and all remodels must be built above flood level. This calm and private neighborhood is home to former 49ers quarterback Steve Young, and in May 2011 Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg purchased a 5,617 square foot Crescent Park home for $7 million.

ENTERTAINMENT

Tamarine Restaurant Stanford Theatre Downtown Shopping

the friendliest neighbor: Mark Zuckerberg

district 12

PROFESSORVILLE
In the late 1800s professors at Stanford University were allowed to build homes on the universitys property, but could only lease the land itself. Professors who preferred to own property that was not already owned by the Stanford family purchased land in what is now known as Professorville, the closest place between campus and Downtown where professors could have their own property rights. Professorville is the oldest residential neighborhood in Palo Alto and is a registered historic district. The neighborhood features a variety of architectural styles including late Victorian, Colonial Revival, and Bungalows. The neighborhood was once home to older empty-nesters, but has experienced a surge of new energy and gentrification in the last decade with many young families moving in. With Downtown and shopping centers nearby, many residents walk or bike around, making it very easy for neighbors to get to know one another. Residents of Professorville who seek to remodel or rebuild their homes oftentimes face opposition from the Palo Alto Historical Review Board which seeks to maintain the historic status of Palo Altos historic sites.

get to know Professorville and Downtown...


SCHOOLS
Duveneck Elementary Addison Elementary David Starr Jordan Middle School Palo Alto High School

Palo Altos Downtown was originally built for the construction workers who were building Stanford University in the 1890s. The homes are mostly small bungalows, but many homeowners have remodeled and built their homes up.

DOWN TOWN
Stretching eleven blocks along University Avenue, Downtown is now one of the liveliest spots in Palo Alto. With great shops, restaurants, and bars, along with offices and a park plaza, Downtown brings an urban vibe to this small town.

district 13

RECREATION

Rinconada Park Gamble Gardens Heritage Park Palo Alto Club

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION

Downtown North Neighborhood Association lorimer@meer.net

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notes

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