7.4 out of 10

Oceanview

Ranked 42nd best neighborhood in San Francisco
37.7151963043165 -122.457623224957
Great for
  • Cost of Living
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Not great for
  • Nightlife
  • Medical Facilities
  • Eating Out
  • Parking
  • Schools
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Singles
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian

Reviews

3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+
Editors Choice

"On the Lookout for a Better Outlook"

Despite its panorama-promising name, Oceanview really doesn’t have one. It’s hard to see much besides surrounding hills from most vantage points in this neighborhood, which sits in a kind of valley bounded on the north by Lakeview, on the south by Sagamore, and on the west by Orizaba. In fact, the neighborhood gets its name from a station on the defunct railroad line that once linked San Francisco and San Jose in the mid-1800s. The old “Ocean View” station itself likely referred to what the train passed a mile or so to the southwest, on what is now Junipero Serra Boulevard, beyond the confines of today’s neighborhood. Though there’s no trace of the station today, the intersection where it stood—the crossroads of Alemany, Sagamore, Plymouth, and Sickles—is a reminder of what was once a kind of town square for the self-contained community that sprung up around the station, complete with a fountain in the middle (now long gone).

In the 1880s, when the railroad still carried San Franciscans out to what was then considered “the country”—to picnic, take a stagecoach to the beach, or to gamble in one of many of the area’s notorious “road houses”—the little community that grew up around the train station had its own post office, police station, firehouse, bakery, market, and more than a couple of bars. Early settlers—Italian, Irish, and German—came here to live a simple, countrified life amid dairy and vegetable farms. The Railroad Homestead Association had already laid out its wide streets and long rectangular blocks that ran in a straight east/west line—a grid that holds today. By the time the other neighborhoods were developed around Oceanview in the early 1900s, they had to conform to the streets already in place here, resulting in an interrupted street pattern, particularly along Orizaba. This also meant that Oceanview had a large number of older homes, many of them good examples of Victorian architecture that stand out among the low-slung houses built from the 1920s through the 1950s, as the rest of the city engulfed the area. It was perhaps because of these older homes that Oceanview was among the few neighborhoods where African Americans could buy property without facing discrimination in the post-World War II era, as urban renewal in the Fillmore District prompted them to seek housing elsewhere.

But over time, the absorbing of Oceanview into the rest of San Francisco did not bode well for the little community. When passenger service ended on the train line in 1904, and commercial development shifted to the electric train line along Mission Street, the area’s businesses declined. By the time the Southern Freeway (I-280) was built along the neighborhood’s southern fringe in the 1960s, Oceanview was deteriorating fast. By the 1980s, drug dealers and gangs made it their home, further stifling the district. Were it not for the efforts of a neighborhood group, Neighbors in Action, Oceanview might still be a forbidding place.

But thanks to neighborhood activism, the area is on the rebound today. Though some streets still have boarded-up homes and graffiti-covered walls, there is a new community center on Montana Street between Capitol and Plymouth—the Minnie and Lovie Ward Recreation Center, a considerably refurbished park with a new playground and four handsomely designed buildings connected by a loggia, including a freestanding gymnasium, community room, and teen building for use by participants in the city’s Safe Haven Program. Kitty-corner from the park is Sheridan Elementary School, a K-5 elementary that was totally renovated in the late 1990s and received a 5 out of 10 rating by GreatSchools.

Elsewhere, the old Engine Co. No. 33 Firehouse on Broad Street has been restored and now offers tours of the site as well as sites throughout San Francisco in an old fire engine. The firehouse is situated in the middle of an up-and-coming commercial area centered around Broad and Plymouth. Though it’s far from quaint, the intersection features a number of shops and businesses (including a holdout barber shop, Furlough’s Tonsorial Parlor) that beckon pedestrians and commuters using the “M” streetcar, which has stops along Broad Street. (The area’s tiny library has moved a few blocks away to new, bigger, and much-improved quarters on Randolph Street.) There are also a number of houses of worship in the area, along with St. Michael’s Korean Catholic Church, a large complex near this new center of activity, with services in English and Korean.

Oceanview, like its immediate neighbors, is a prime candidate for undergrounding utilities. Overhead on most streets is a dark tangle of wires and poles, eyesores that block views and add to the area's unkempt look. The city has begun replacing the modern “cobra” streetlights with a classic “teardrop” more in keeping with the era in which the neighborhood flourished, but lack of funds has stymied a full-speed ahead approach on burying utility wires.

The 15,000 or so people who live in Oceanview are, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics, a diverse mix: 40 percent Asian, 30 percent African American, 18 percent white, and the remaining 12 percent of two or more races. (Almost 20 percent identify themselves as Latino of any race.) They are by and large middle class, with a median annual household income of $60,000, and 75 percent own their homes.

Outside of the budding commercial stretch near Broad and Plymouth, there is little in the way of mercantile activity elsewhere in the neighborhood. A few storefronts, a gas station, and a car repair garage sit at the eastern end of Sagamore, and an isolated corner market or two are scattered elsewhere in the neighborhood. But for the most part, people travel outside the area, to Ocean View Village in adjacent Ingleside Heights or beyond, for major shopping.

Public transportation here is fairly limited here. The “M” streetcar runs east and west along Broad Street, on the way either downtown or to the Balboa Park BART station. The local No. 54 bus runs along Sagamore and up and down Plymouth, bound for the Balboa Park BART station. The scant business activity in the area means that parking is fairly easy, and there are few on-street parking restrictions, save along a small section of San Jose Avenue, where the “V” residential permit enables holders to disregard time limits.

Crime is moderately high in the neighborhood, led by disturbing the peace (in the form of noise nuisances), robberies and burglaries, as well as vehicle thefts and auto break-ins. Assaults are also common in a three-month period, and there have been four homicides in the last three years, including one reported in late August of 2010.

Real estate here is gradually staging a comeback from the doldrums of 2008-2009, with a 12 percent overall increase in median home prices during 2010. Many of the homes for sale are considered low- to bargain-priced, with a two-bedroom, one-bath home on Plymouth listing for $419,000 and a handyman’s special of similar dimensions on Majestic going for $315,000. Rentals here are hard to find, but are generally multi-bedroom homes, such as the four-bedroom, two-bath across from the new recreation center that listed for $3,000 a month.

Although the deterioration of Oceanview has slowed (if not halted altogether), the revitalization has been fairly slow. Nevertheless, the neighborhood has the potential to become a good choice for those who need easy access to I-280 for commuting, for young families looking for a starter home, and for couples seeking to downsize in a district with distinct possibilities.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
Gonzousa
Gonzousa Good piece. One point I would add: Most Oceanview homes have views. The neighborhood sits mostly on hills, not a valley. If you go to any of the homes on the top slopes you get these magnificent views (I have one myself): East - Bay views and East Bay hills, plus Mt. Diablo, West: Pacific Ocean with unobstructed views of the Farallon Islands, North: Marin Headlands and Twin Peaks, South: San Bruno Mountain and parks.
2yrs+
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5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 5/5
2yrs+

"Oceanview - Love it! Family-Friendly Neighborhood - the city's best kept secret - shhhhhh"

Oceanview is San Francisco's best kept real estate secret, especially so for professionals and young families looking for an affordable, but safe and family-friendly neighborhood.

Yes, Oceanview used to be one of San Francisco's most crime-ridden districts. TODAY, it is safer than most neighborhoods in the city. Walk around Oceanview Rec Center (now the newly renovated Minnie and Lovie Ward Recreational Center) any day of the week and you will see Asian grandmothers caring for their grandkids at the playground, and before sunset, white moms running throughout the neighborhood pushing their babies in jogging strollers. There is true diversity in this neighborhood: according to the 2010 Census, Oceanview is 44.68% Asian, 22.99% African American, 20.36% Caucasian and 14.1% Latino. My wife and I are both bi-racial, and this is one of the few neighborhoods in the city that still has celebrates its culture and diversity. We have lived in the city for 15 years and are sadly seeing the cultural diversity diminish. Not in Oceanview! It is flourishing! From the several Christian/Baptist churches and Korean Catholic churches to the Oceanview Rec Center, community centers and collaboratives (Ocean View-Merced Heights-Ingleside Neighbors In Action - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Oceanview-Merced-Heights-Ingleside-Community-Collaborative-OMICC/193618090737917) – the community is overflowing with neighbors from different backgrounds and one shared goal – taking pride in the Oceanview district.

Okay, enough of the wikipedia type summary. Here’s why I love Oceanview:

1. Oceanview Rec Center / Minnie and Lovie Ward Rec Center. RENOVATION COMPLETE as of September 2014. http://sfrecpark.org/event/celebrate-the-new-athletic-field-at-minnie-lovie-ward/ New fields, including lined turf soccer and softball fields with night time field lighting. The new rec center building itself has a gym, community room available for event rental, teen building, and multipurpose rooms. http://sfdpw.org/index.aspx?page=163 My kids’ favorite park in the city!

2. Just two blocks north is Ocean Ave., which has all of the following within a half mile stretch: Whole Foods, Walgreens and CVS, and neighborhood favorites, Champa Garden (one of the top Thai/Laotian restaurants in the city), Beep’s Burgers (burgers, fries, hot dogs and shakes are always on point), Pho Ha Tien (tasty Vietnamese Restaurant), and some very solid cafes (Melanios, Fog Lifter, Java On).

3. Easy transportation galore! 3 blocks from Balboa Park BART, which is a 10 minute ride into the financial district. Uber, Lyft and Sidecar are readily available, and based on my experience, can usually pick you up in Oceanview within 5 minutes. For a cheaper way into the financial district, Muni M line along the east, south and west boundaries of Oceanview; and J, K and L lines are just a few blocks north.

4. 24 Hour Fitness with an indoor basketball court on Ocean Ave. just a few blocks north with games going on night and day.

5. What was once a crime-ridden neighborhood, is now safer than most neighborhoods in the city.

6. Easy access to the freeway – 2-3 minutes to the 280 with a quick connection to the 101.

7. Stonestown Mall is less than 5 minutes away! http://www.stonestowngalleria.com/ Nice stroll around the mall with young babies. And the Stonestown Farmers market! http://www.yelp.com/biz/stonestown-farmers-market-san-francisco Food stands are the best and you don't have to drive to Fort Mason for Off the Grid -- the Fritas Shack booth, which serves San Diego Fried Mexican Food (California Burrito and Carne Asada fries are the best in Northern California) is to die for. Grocery shopping has a decent selection, but not amazing.

8. 10 minutes to Ocean Beach; 10 minutes to Golden Gate Park, de Young Museum and Academy of Sciences; 5 minutes to Stern Grove

Solid, up and coming neighborhood.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Students
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Top 10 Reasons to Buy a Home In San Francisco's Oceanview neighborhood (...and do it soon...)"

Oceanview is perhaps San Francisco's best kept real estate secret. It's a neighborhood in transition, and the pace of change is accelerating. My partner and I purchased a single family here in 2013. We owned a condo on Valencia in San Francisco's Mission District, and while the Mission was fun...we now own the land under our feet, with a single family house in Oceanview.

Here are my Top 10 reasons to live in Oceanview:
1 . Homes are still relatively more affordable in Oceanview than the rest of San Francisco. As of Dec 2013, average price for a home in Oceanview was only $597K versus the average $884K for SF overall.
2. Oceanview has one of the lowest crime rates in the entire city. http://www.trulia.com/crime/#!san-francisco-ca/13/37.77096,-122.42529/San_Francisco,CA/
3. One of the highest home ownership rates in the city - with 68% of homes owner-occupied: http://www.sustainablecommunitiesindex.org/city_indicators/view/81
4. Multiple public transportation options. The northeast section of Oceanview is just 3 blocks from BART (Balboa Park station). The M line runs along the east, south and west perimeters of the neighborhood. The J, K and L are just a few blocks from the north border (Lakeview Avenue). Plus multiple bus lines with the city's newest, hybrid buses bring you to Oceanview. Want to drink and eat out in the Mission? On BART, Balboa Park to 24th/Mission is a 5 minute ride! Driving time: 2 exits in 3 minutes! BART also gets you to Powell street shopping in 11 minutes, or the financial district in 12 minutes.
5. Sports and recreation: San Francisco's newest, state-of-the-art sports and recreation center is being built in the heart of Oceanview with soccer, football, baseball fields. This will complement the existing Minnie and Lovie Ward Recreation/Community Center. More info here: http://www.trulia.com/crime/#!san-francisco-ca/11/37.72607,-122.42568/San_Francisco,CA/
6. New Whole Foods, apartments and restaurants have sprouted on Ocean Avenue, just 3 short blocks from Oceaview's northern border.
7. Views: Oceanview is a series of rolling hills with panoramic views. To the east, there are bay views, to the north there are Marin Headlands views, to the south San Bruno mountain views, to the west there are ocean views all the way to the Farallon Islands on a clear day.
8. Fog (especially during drought periods) The fog rolls in just often enough to coat the ground and plants with moisture during the driest months. This is a great natural asset during the spring, summer and fall months.
9. Super easy access to Silicon Valley via 280, with a connection to 101. Oceanview gives you easy access to the highway in ~ 2-3 mins from any part of the neighborhood. Local street traffic in San Francisco is crippling and it can take 20-30 minutes just to reach the highway, from many San Francisco neighborhoods.
10. Diversity: This is a truly diverse neighborhood and you will see that diversity day in and day out.
Recommended for
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  • Families with kids
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Students
3/5
2yrs+

"A great place to relax with friends"

The Oceanview community is a vast, gently sloping area of straight and right angled streets containing straight and right angled houses, a few of which predate the 1930s.

There are few business establishments and most of its residents prefer to shop at Stonestown or on Ocean Avenue. There is a small shopping center called Alemany but just doesn't have a lot to offer in terms of getting your retail fix.

Oceanview's one asset is a four square block park with grass playing field. The area also has basketball, volleyball, and tennis courts which make the neighborhood a very friendly and family-oriented environment. It's easy to pick up a game with some strangers that will soon become friends, or just kick back and people watch.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
4/5
2yrs+

"Another part of the Oceanview Neigborhood."

I grew up in Oceanview, Ingleside, or the slang term Lakeview. Most of these reviews concentrate on the part of Oceanview between Thrift Ave - Broad St. However, I grew up on the side from Lakeview Ave - Ocean Ave. On this side there are lots of businesses mostly family owned some have been there for ages. Also the K street car and the bus barn next to City College have been long fixtures in this community. I remember when the OMI office was located on the corner of Granada and Holloway Ave. Holloway leads you to S F State University. I just thought this is another part of Oceanview that should be mentioned.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Beach Lovers
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
2yrs+

"You'll never even know it was there"

Once plagued by underdevelopment and a myriad of criminal activity, Oceanview has been a struggling middle-class community for decades. It is saturated with a handful of abandoned houses, squatting families and homeless roaming the streets. Currently, the 2/3 of the population is made up of African and Asian Americans while the rest is split between white and people who are two or more races. However, it was not until recently that an influx of Asian Americans settled in the area. Moreover, many young families have been moving in for bargain prices, hoping they’d get in before the neighborhood’s upward expansion.

Commercial real estate is somewhat improved around Plymouth and Broad with quaint shops and long-established businesses popping up in recent years. But other than a gas station and a few corner stores, most of the residents head elsewhere for their commercial needs.

Oceanview is located in the southern part of San Francisco with Interstate 280 curbs its south and eastern borders. For local transportation, the M and 54 Muni lines traverse the area. Balboa Bart station lies just northeastern of the neighborhood for those commuters traveling into downtown while others traveling south head to Daly City Bart Station (5 minute drive).
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
3/5
2yrs+

"Not Quite City Feeling"

Oceanview is a small neighborhood on the south western part of San Francisco. This area has easy access out of town to the south with the nearby 280 freeway -- undoubtedly a better drive than 101 if you're going south if you prefer a more scenic to industrial road.

This part of town doesn't quite feel like the city, as it is on the southern edge near to Daly City. The area is great for people who commute to the south bay, for folks looking to visit the beach often, San Francisco State University students and anyone who wants to be able to get into the heart of the city quickly but doesn't want to live in the heart of the city.

If you're looking for a little greenery, be sure to check out Ocean View Playground at Lobos and Plymouth.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Another neighborhood consisting of homes"

Oceanview lies right next to Daly City. The neighborhood itself is pretty boring as it only consists of homes and nothing else really. But as for things to do, you’ll only find it if you travel outside of Oceanview. Granted there is a recreation center in Oceanview, but there are definitely more exciting things to do if you just travel a bit outside of Oceanview. For one you can head towards Daly City to the Century 21 movie theater. Not only the theater, but the whole area in general is a hot spot for teenagers and young adults to hang out. Not only because of the movie theater but also because of the local restaurants like Fuddruckers, Cold Stones, Jamba Juice, and Kome Japanese Seafood Buffet. So if you live in Oceanview, you’re only a 5-10 drive from all this fun. Living in Oceanview you’re also really close to Stonestown, another great place to go and get food, hang out, and shop with friends.

Living here isn’t all that bad, you can easily get to places because Oceanview lies next to some of San Francisco’s busiest and most essential commuting roads such as 19th Avenue, Junipero Sierra Boulevard and the 280 freeway. However, with living next to these roads also comes to the disadvantage of having to live and deal with the noise of traffic.
Recommended for
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  • Retirees

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Best Streets in Oceanview

1

Summit St

2.5/5
"A Narrow street that consists only of houses"
37.7179137568112 -122.4543364955
2

Broad St

2.5/5
"Residential street in Oceanview"
37.713161013254 -122.460796500237
3

Lobos St

2.5/5
"Street next to Oceanview park"
37.7148960134009 -122.460827000302
4

Thrift St

2.5/5
"Just a residential street in Oceanview"
37.7174325060822 -122.461432500186
5

Montana St

2/5
"Quite a quiet street in Ocean View"
37.7165820060835 -122.461424000174

Unranked Streets in Oceanview

"Quiet street near a playground"
37.7140425133198 -122.460812000284

Minerva St

2.5/5
"Street in Ocean View and near a playground"
37.7157426805572 -122.461373909482

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