University Square neighborhood in Santa Clara

Quiet residential zone sign in the University Square neighborhood near SCUThe University Square neighborhood in Santa Clara is walking distance to Santa Clara University. I grew up there, riding my bike in the forbidden college walkways, and recall my Realtor mother referring to the area as “Little Professorville.” That was a reference to a lovely Palo Alto neighborhood in the shadow of Stanford University. She wasn’t wrong – we knew some professors who walked to SCU each day from that neighborhood, including my grandfather.

Where is the University Square neighborhood?

The neighborhood may not have exact boundaries, but appears to be bordered by Park Avenue on the east, Washington Street on the west, the University to the north, and Newhall Avenue to the south.

The area closest to the campus is fairly congested, both with density of housing and the amount of cars parked everywhere. This is where you’ll see the reminder that it’s a quiet, residential zone.

 

University Square neighborhood in Santa Clara

 

A drive through the area will make it clear where there are tons of cars – and where it’s less congested.

 

Alviso Street in University Square close to Santa Clara University

 

Get past Poplar, though, and suddenly it’s a completely different feel, with almost no cars on the street and homes being spread further apart.

 

Ranch style house in University Square with large picture window facing front

 

The homes found between Washington and Park, and along Alviso Street, are mixed architecturally. Some streets, like Circle Drive and College Avenue, are primarily ranch style houses built from 1955 – 1950 (some of the county records say 1900 – that just means they lost the records and don’t know!). Some of these have been expanded tremendously. The house I grew up in as a child was 1400 square feet, but it’s been added onto a couple or more times and is now more than 3000 SF.

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The City of Santa Clara

Mission Santa ClaraThe City of Santa Clara sits in the heart of Silicon Valley and today it is well known for Mission Santa Clara, Santa Clara University, the Great America Theme Park, neighborhood & civic swimming pools and competitive swim teams, and of course high tech companies such as Intel, Applied Materials and Texas Instruments (among others). Within the San Francisco Bay Area, the construction of the new football stadium has been huge in raising the city’s profile in the eyes of sports enthusiasts. For business people, the Santa Clara Convention Center is a big draw too.

For many Silicon Valley workers, one of the biggest draws to Santa Clara is the shorter commute times it tends to afford. For some, it may also be newer construction and a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood at the Rivermark area.  And others may want to live in Santa Clara near Valley Fair and Santana Row.

I have a particular fondness for what used to be referred to as “The Mission City”  due to its history and continuing presence of the Mission Santa Clara today.  Perhaps I am also biased as I spent 10 years of my childhood living near Santa Clara University and another in the San Tomas Woods neighborhood, and to this day am a frequent visitor at the Mission.  There’s a lot to love, and more reasons joining the ranks every day with the new 49ers stadium on the horizon too.

Buying a home in Santa Clara

What does it cost to buy a house, townhouse or condo in the city of Santa Clara?  Have a look – below please find a list of homes for sale, newest listings shown first.

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(all data current as of 7/13/2024)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.