Why here?

Why do you live in the Downtown/Southside Park/R Street Corridor/Richmond Grove area? What are the great things about it? Is there anything that you wish were different?


One of the main reasons I love Downtown is the easy access to other interesting neighborhoods and events.  Here’s a sampling of activities and events from the past month that I could walk to or ride my bike to:


Chalk it Up

Friday Night Concerts at Caesar Chavez Parkmovies at Southside Park

Andy Warhol’s Athlete Portraits Star at The Crocker Art Museum

Several farmer’s markets (Cesar Chavez Plaza, Fremont Park, Roosevelt Park & under the freeway at X and 3rd)

Gold Rush Days in Old Town

San Francisco Mime Troupe performing in Southside Park

Second Saturday Art Walk

…..and more


I spoke with a cross-section of neighbors and residents to answer this question- “Why do you love this area?” and felt a deeper sense of connection with my community from having done so. I hope you will post the reasons you like living in our community and subsequently feel more connected, as well.


Several people mentioned the easy access to work especially if you work for a state agency, as many are within a short walking distance! And if you do want to drive somewhere, all the freeways come together right in or close to our neighborhood.


Ben , a state employee who does walk to work, noted the gem of Southside Park itself- the fully accessible playground for children of all abilities, the pool and community center, the pond, the popular walking track, the horseshoe pit, and picnic tables. He commented that it is not only used by locals, but many families often take advantage of this park on the weekends- after attending religious services in the area or dividing up while one parent does the shopping on Sundays at the market and the other entertains the children on the playground.


One 17-year resident of Southside Park, Liz, a mother of two teens, loves “living downtown for a lot of reasons. I like the idea that if my car isn’t available, I can walk to whatever I need-the corner store for a coke, or to a drugstore or Target for some necessity. Or I can decide to go to the movies without paying for parking. I like feeling that I’m where the action is, even though I live in a fairly quiet neighborhood. I never know when I’m going to go for a walk in the park and there’ll be some sort of celebration going on. People come to my neighborhood as a destination. I don’t have to go looking for interesting things far away. I also like that there are people who’ve lived here for a long time and there’s a sense of history here, not just random people who’ve been plunked down in the midst of a development.”


The bikeability and walkability of the Downtown area lets Christina,  a vibrant, enthusiastic woman in her 30’s, lead a rich life. “I love the (energy) present on the street when going from one place to another- people from different backgrounds and cultures are all over. Differently abled people, different races and (as a disabled person) I’m not stuck in my apartment alone and isolated. I go shopping, run errands and live a good life.” likemany Bay Area transpolants, Christina had "…fear moving from SF to Sacramento,"but quickly learned it was accessible, especially with her specialized bike.  And when she shared with me, I felt increedibly touched her preference for living here, rather than anywhere else: “I don’t feel different. I feel accepted." 


But if you were to ask her what she DOESN’T like, she mentions the derth of restauarants and cafes in our area. 


Which leads to an article or posting many people would like to discuss….one I hope YOU would consider posting on…why are there so few eating establishments in our area?


** Don’t see articles that interest you? Have a burning topic that you’d like to start discussion on? No professional writing experience needed! Contact Community Editor Jennifer Savin at jennifer@sacramentopress.com 

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October 14, 2008 | 10:52 AM

I moved here from Brooklyn, New York and always love living downtown. But I do miss diners and restaurants in walking distance. I love Vallejo’s at 4th, and Bernardo’s at 15(?), but that is not enough. Somedays you just need eggs, toast and a cuppa joe at the diner, youknowhatI”msayin?

October 14, 2008 | 8:46 PM

GB I DO know what you’re saying! I moved here from Oakland and experience DT as a drought. Maybe you could expand on that idea as a community contributor??

October 14, 2008 | 11:06 AM

Old Ironsides has a pretty good lunch menu hint hint

October 15, 2008 | 12:24 PM

June’s Cafe on 10th and V is probably my favorite Southside diner. There are plenty of restaurants in the area: maybe you just haven’t found them yet?

October 16, 2008 | 9:35 AM

Maybe you’re right, maybe I haven’t found them. Can you tell me more?

October 16, 2008 | 2:14 PM

Sadly one of my favorites closed recently: New Wakano Ura on 10th and W. Ricksha, across 10th Street from New Wakano Ura, is a nice Japanese restaurant, and June’s is a real treasure although it’s hard to catch them when they’re open (10:30 AM to 2 PM.)

Another great neighborhood place is Dad’s Sandwich Shop, on S at 13th. Vallejo’s, Bernardo’s at R15 and Old Ironsides have already been mentionjed. There’s Gam Lei Sig Chinese restaurant on 9th and S across from Beers Books, the Waffle Square across from Old Ironsides at 10th and S, and the Chinese market on 11th and S also serves hot Chinese food at reasonable prices.

If you go out to 15th Street, there are more food choices: Ernesto’s, Kamon Sushi, the always amazing Harry’s Cafe, and even Pizza Hut.

Admittedly things get sparser on the western end of Southside Park, near the park and the freeway. Construction of Interstate 5 destroyed most of the old Third Street shopping district decades ago, and about the only business on that end of the neighborhood is Southside Market at 6th and T. Of course, a lot of the old storefronts are still there, just waiting for the right tenant. I wouldn’t be too surprised to see more neighborhood restaurants pop up in those spots eventually…the question is when?

October 17, 2008 | 10:33 PM

That’s a great list…….I’m on the West end….5 and T. Part of the problem!

October 20, 2008 | 10:22 PM

Rickshaw is a great place for and affordable meal, my co-workers and I have made it one of our regular spots.
The box lunch options are generous, well to be exact everything has been generous.

oh and Iv been to June with William and it is a treat!

October 25, 2008 | 12:25 PM

Southside Park neighborhood is great because it has one of my top-three favorite parks in Sacramento (besides McKinley & Land). You can’t beat it’s location for convenience & centrality. We have more of a neighborhood feel than midtown, where residents have to compete with bars/restaurants for parking. The only bad thing about the neighborhood is the amount of crime & blight… You have that anywhere downtown though. I think there are planning issues that could really help improve that situation though: establish a better ‘mixed-use’ policy along the S-R St corridor, and Broadway corridor. There is already economic incentive to do that along S-R, but the City would need to help reverse damage that’s been done in the past with emminent domain by the State which has turned the core into a lifeless concrete jungle. There should also be connections made to further motivate development along these corridors. Decking I-5 from Q St to Capitol Mall would reconnect downtown with the waterfront & further revitalize the core. A Broadway bridge would spur development of the docks area & revitalize the blighted west end of Broadway.

October 27, 2008 | 11:03 PM

I agree with a lot of what you wrote, Steve, but I’m not so sure about the Broadway bridge. I ‘ve heard that would put a tremendous amount of cars on Broadway and bring even more traffic to our neighborhood. As it is in the morning, and living a quarter block off 5th, it sounds like a raceway. All summer I wanted to meditate with my door open to get the cool morning air but could only do so on the weekends due to the noise. I can’t imagine adding more to the mix. I do agree Sacto (and Cali in general) does A TERRIBLE job of optimizing the downtown water-front areas. I was all for a stadium down here- maybe b/c I come from back east where there has been great success with downtown stadiums (Go Ravens and Orioles!) Plus, since the cities are a bit older they were built around the waterfront and now everyone uses the area- locals and tourists alike. For example, the main courthouse in Annaplois, MD (my hometown) is about 6 blocks from the water.

October 28, 2008 | 4:15 PM

Sacramento was built around its waterfront too, we just knocked down pretty much everything that was built along the waterfont except for a couple blocks of Old Sacramento…and our main courthouse is about 7 blocks from the water.

November 15, 2008 | 8:59 AM

But not accessible…when I say 6 blocks from the water I meant 6 useful, accessible, well-travelled by locals and tourists alike. Independent and chain shops, restaurants, small grocers…you get the picture.

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