Noe Valley is a neighborhood
in the central part of San Francisco, California.
Its borders are generally considered to be
22nd Street to the north, Randall Street to the south, Dolores
Street to the east, and Grand View Avenue to the west. These
borders are understood to be somewhat flexible, particularly by
real estate agents. The Castro
is directly to Noe Valley's north, although the
border is not well defined and can stretch into Noe Valley, and
The Mission is to its east.
Like many other San Francisco neighborhoods, Noe Valley started out
as a working-class neighborhood for employees and their families in
the area's once-thriving blue-collar
economy, but has since undergone successive waves of gentrification
and is now considered an
area. It is home to many
urban professionals, particularly young couples with children, and
it is not unusual for a well-maintained house in Noe Valley to sell
for two million dollars or more .
Public transportation to Noe Valley is provided by the Muni 24, 26, 35, and 48
, and by the J Church Muni Metro
A purple house on Romain St near 21st
and Douglass Sts.
neighborhood is named after José de Jesús Noé, the last
Mexican alcalde (mayor) of Yerba Buena (present day San Francisco).
Noe Valley was primarily built up at the end of the 19th century
and at the beginning of the 20th century, especially in the years
just after the 1906 San
. As a result, the neighborhood contains
many examples of the "classic" Victorian
residential architecture for which San
Francisco is famous. As a working-class neighborhood, Noe Valley
houses were built in rows, with some of the efficient, low-cost
homes being more ornate than others, depending on the owner's taste
and finances. Today, Noe Valley has the highest concentration of
row houses in San Francisco, with streets having three to four and
sometimes as many as a dozen on the same side. However, few facades
in such rows of houses remain unchanged since their creation in the
late 19th and early 20th Century.
Valley streets were laid out and named by John Meirs Horner, who
named Elizabeth Street after his wife and Jersey Street after
state where he was born.
Most of Noe Valley is
still called Horner's Addition for tax purposes by the city
In the 1970s, many small businesses contributed to the image and
perception of Noe Valley. A combination of old, traditional
businesses and new entrepreneurs helped to build the reputation of
Noe Valley. As rents increased, many of these small entrepreneurial
businesses were casualties of gentrification and development.
24th and Castro
The topographic layout is actually two main valleys. One flows from
the Clipper / 22nd/ Grandview area down 24th / Jersey to Church,
and the other flows from the 27th /Diamond / 30th area down Day to
Church where it meets the first valley; the conjoined valleys then
both exit the Noe Valley district. This makes the hilly area
relatively dry, and the soil resistant to earthquake liquefaction.
Most houses up the hills sit directly on bed rock as can be seen at
Douglass Park (bare red rock - radiolarian chert).Traffic flow is
limited - one main North access through Castro Street to Eureka
Valley, one main West access up Clipper Street toward the former
Twin Peaks toll plaza and West of the city, several East accesses
to Mission through 24th, Cesar Chavez and other numbered streets,
and the main North-South Church Street access used by the J Church
Muni Light Rail.
The neighborhood is primarily residential, although there are two
bustling commercial strips. The first along 24th Street, between
Church Street and Diamond Street, and the second, less dense
corridor along Church Street, between 24th Street and 30th
In November 2000, the Noe Valley Voice
following statistics for the neighborhood, citing a 1999 poll of
registered voters by David Binder Research, a prominent local
- European American: 80%
- Age 30-49: 53%
- Female: 51%
- Heterosexual: 71%
- Rent housing (vs. own): 52%
- University graduate: 78%
- Democrat: 79%
- Republican: 6%
- Religious affiliation: 63%
- Not religious: 38%
- Noe Valley Voice. Noe Valley Home Sales, July/August
2006, p. 17.
- Mazook, "AND NOW FOR THE RUMORS BEHIND THE NEWS", Noe Valley
Voice, November 2000.
- Mazook, "Rumors Behind the News", Noe Valley Voice, November