3.6 out of 10

Highland

Ranked 49th best neighborhood in Austin
30.3333778902586 -97.7136044933941
Great for
  • Public Transport
  • Shopping Options
  • Eating Out
  • Parking
  • Cost of Living
Not great for
  • Pest Free
  • Childcare
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Clean & Green
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Professionals
  • Students
  • Retirees

Reviews

3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
2yrs+

"Commuter-friendly suburb not too far from the action"

Located beside Crestview and not far from Brentwood, Highland borders some nice areas of Austin. And it’s a quick jaunt over to all the things that make Brentwood and Crestview great—the farmer’s market, the playgrounds and pools, the kid-friendly locales and activities. Highland itself is less polished than these neighborhoods. Mostly comprised of modest single-family homes, on (skimpy)tree-lined streets, Highland is probably best known for the Highlands Mall. Nearby, is the Galaxy Highland movie theater.

Probably the two coolest institutions of Highland are the Blue Genie Art Bazaar—where you can shop in the open air for locally-made arts and crafts, and Oriental Market—a huge Korean grocery store/video store/housewares shop/restaurant all one roof. The Korean food here is delicious, cheap and authentic. Good Asian food is not easy to find in Austin, so this place is a treasure.
Pros
  • Close to Crestview/Brentwood
  • Oriental Market
  • Blue Genie Art Bazaar
  • Close to I-35 and 290
  • Convenient location
  • Not too expensive
  • Great for shopping
  • a few nice dining options on the borders of the neighborhood
Cons
  • Relatively high crime
  • Traffic
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Affordable Living in An Area Close to Downtown Austin"

Located to the north of the Downtown Austin area, the Highlands neighborhood is an affordable option for those looking to make a move to this Texas city. Single family homes here range from $150,000 to $275,000 and there are also very affordable apartment and condominium options. It borders Interstate 35 to the east and has plenty of Capitol Metro rail and bus options, so it's easy to get anywhere in the city. It's a racially diverse neighborhood with a growing Asian population and is a fairly safe neighborhood that borders on some neighborhoods that are less than desirable. The direction this neighborhood is heading is in question with some of the strip malls losing tenants and a crime rate that has been on the rise.

It's served by the Austin Independent School District, and private schools are also in the area. One of the drawbacks to this neighborhood is that it lacks the charm and vibe that many of the other low-income areas of Austin have in abundance. Still there are several good dining options on the borders of the neighborhood such as big chain fast food options and a couple of coffee houses and Italian and seafood restaurants.
Pros
  • a few nice dining options on the borders of the neighborhood
  • Close to I-35 and 290
  • Convenient location
  • Not too expensive
Cons
  • No personality
  • Relatively high crime
  • Traffic
  • Mall is dying
  • Some traffic on I-35 and 290
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Affordable Living in An Area Close to Downtown Austin"

Located to the north of the Downtown Austin area, the Highlands neighborhood is an affordable option for those looking to make a move to this Texas city. Single family homes here range from $150,000 to $275,000 and there are also very affordable apartment and condominium options. It borders Interstate 35 to the east and has plenty of Capitol Metro rail and bus options, so it's easy to get anywhere in the city. It's a racially diverse neighborhood with a growing Asian population and is a fairly safe neighborhood that borders on some neighborhoods that are less than desirable. The direction this neighborhood is heading is in question with some of the strip malls losing tenants and a crime rate that has been on the rise.

It's served by the Austin Independent School District, and private schools are also in the area. One of the drawbacks to this neighborhood is that it lacks the charm and vibe that many of the other low-income areas of Austin have in abundance. Still there are several good dining options on the borders of the neighborhood such as big chain fast food options and a couple of coffee houses and Italian and seafood restaurants.
Pros
  • Close to I-35 and 290
  • Convenient location
  • Not too expensive
Cons
  • No personality
  • Relatively high crime
  • Traffic
  • Mall is dying
  • Some traffic on I-35 and 290
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Students
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"An odd mix, but not a totally bad bet"

Right on the cusp between the good parts and the less desirable places in North Austin, Highland walks a fine line. It's not a bad neighborhood by itself, with all kinds of old Austin charm to spare. Living so close to the train tracks is never ideal, but things don't start getting bad until you cross I-35. That being said, there is plenty of value to be had in Highland if you take a look for it. Quick access up and down Lamar will bring you to most points of interest that you can find in the north end of town, and the blocks themselves are quiet and well maintained.

Here you can find most of the biggest benefits of living north without having to pay out the nose for them. Provided that you aren't killing yourself with a cross town commute, this place might be just what you are looking for. There is a lot going for it, and without having to pay too much you are in a position to relax and concentrate on all the other little things that make life enjoyable. Ease of access and a pleasant environment more than make up for any minor drawbacks of choosing this neighborhood.
Pros
  • Convenient location
  • Great for shopping
  • Not too expensive
Cons
  • No personality
  • Relatively high crime
  • Traffic
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 2/5
2yrs+

"Not much personality, but pretty convenient"

Not to be confused with the more upscale Highland Park neighborhood, Highland can best be described as a neighborhood found in the midst of several retail establishments. Centrally located and convenient to downtown and the University of Texas, this is an area that offers much in the way of affordability and access to all necessary amenities. What is doesn’t provide is a lot in the way of Austin charm and character. But it has more personality than your average suburban neighborhood, so for those looking for affordability and convenience without heading to the sterile suburbs, Highland could offer a good compromise.
The boundaries for the Highland neighborhood include Highway 183 to the north, Denson Drive and Airport Boulevard make up the southern border, North Lamar largely defines the western edge and Interstate 35 marks the eastern side. The modest-sized homes found here were largely built in the 1950s and 1960s and some can be bought in the low $100s. One can even find a newly remodeled home for less than $250,000, making this area an attractive choice for young families and professionals. Schools in the neighborhood include Brown and Reilly Elementary Schools, Webb Middle School and Lanier and McCallum High Schools.

One element of the Highland neighborhood is its easy access to a variety of retail areas. Some are rather nondescript strip malls, but other newer developments offer some ethnic diversity, particularly the growing Asian community of central north Austin. While Highland Mall is found within the borders of this neighborhood, it is dying a slow death, and will soon become a satellite location of the local Austin Community College. Overall, Highland offers a lot in the way of convenience and affordability, and a little in the way of local entertainment and character.
Pros
  • Convenient location
  • Not too expensive
Cons
  • Mall is dying
  • Not much personality
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 1/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Blah, and getting blah-er, but dirty old men might just love it"

The past few years, it seems like Highland is declining a little bit. Crime is increasing, and the Highland Mall seems a little dated and stale. There’s tons of commercial property for the average suburban middle class shopper, but nothing really special. One thing that’s a must-do here is taking a trip to the House of Torment, which is a pretty elaborate year-round haunted house that puts on specialized shows. I think this place really belongs somewhere cooler than Highland, but at least it’s a bright spot in an otherwise tired area. Oh, for the man-bros there’s Bikini’s Bar and Grill, where the waitresses all wear short shorts and string bikini tops. Because I totally want someone’s belly button ring hanging over my shoulder when they’re filling my water glass. But of course I’m not the target audience here. I guess it’s for guys who think Hooter’s is too conservative, but strip clubs are just crossing the line into the danger zone. Speaking of strip clubs, Sugar’s Uptown Cabaret is also right down the street. Come on, Texas—what’s with the “cabaret” stuff? I was all excited when I first moved here because I thought it would be like going to the Moulin Rouge or something. How disappointing.
Pros
  • Close to I-35 and 290
Cons
  • Traffic
  • Relatively high crime
  • No personality
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Tourists
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 2/5
2yrs+

"A Shopping Haven Away from South Congress Ave."

Not as trendy as the North Loop and Hyde Park communities due south, Highland is a shopping haven for almost every need. The Highland mall has department stores for those looking for brand clothing and the immediate areas around the mall are small strip center offering a variety of goods and services. Jerry's Artarama is the city's favorite art supply store while theaters like the Galaxy Highland and the House of Torment showcase frequent performances and film screenings. Austin Community College also has a campus located in this neighborhood and Kick Butt Coffee offers local java, open mic nights and martial arts. A good selection of Chinese, Indian, Middle Eastern and Mexican restaurants offer visitors an eclectic local taste.

Farther away from the congested I- 35 and Highway 290 are rows of residential spaces that include both single family houses and apartment complexes. Both sale and rental prices are within mid range, making the Highland neighborhood suitable for single professionals as well as some families that do not have too tight of a budget. Buses frequently stop by the Highland Mall, making it extremely easy to go in and out of the neighborhood. This is also a convenient are to live in should you want to travel outside the city as the Greyhound Bus Station is on Koeng Ln. between I- 35 and Airport Blvd. Though kind a little out of the way of much of the Central Austin activity, Highland has its own culture and nightlife to share with anyone that passes through or decides to park themselves.
Pros
  • Close to I-35 and 290
  • Great for shopping
Cons
  • Some traffic on I-35 and 290
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Tourists
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish

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