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Old 06-10-2007, 04:36 PM
2 posts, read 35,951 times
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Its about 1-2 miles south of the 8 and 1-2 miles east of the 805. Is that bad neighborhood or area? Thanks for any feedback!

Last edited by niferdoodle; 06-10-2007 at 04:38 PM.. Reason: spelling error
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Old 06-10-2007, 04:53 PM
Location: Paradise/Las Vegas
1,658 posts, read 6,518,538 times
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Not really safe
It's not the worst area in the city but it can get pretty ugly over there.
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Old 06-10-2007, 06:36 PM
Location: Rolando, San Diego CA 92115
7,990 posts, read 24,496,228 times
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Stay north of Adams. One or 2 blocks north is best. Their are multi-million dollar homes at the northern rim of the mesa. There are nice shops, restaurants and bars there. It's one of the fastest gentrifying neighborhoods in San Diego.

Crime overall is not a big problem unless you go more south towards El Cajon Boulevard and more east into City Heights. South of Adams is a mixed bag - some good, mostly bad.

My brother has lived in the neighborhood for 15+ years and they love it. I spend a *lot* of time over there and think it is one of the better SD city neighborhoods. I almost bought a house in Normal Heights.
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Old 06-10-2007, 09:08 PM
Location: Tijuana Exurbs
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I lived in Normal Heights south of Adams for several years.

There are issues south of Adams. A lot of decent small bungalows were torn down to put in ugly apartments. So you can have nice little homes next to crappy 8 unit apartment buildings without enough parking. Therefore the streets are usually parked up at night.

Crime: I never once felt concerned about my physical safety when living in Normal Heights, and my apartment was never broken into either. However, I was young and poor and didn't have anything worth stealing either. I did happen to interrupt the theft of someone's car tires in the alley behind my apartment by looking out my back window. Just my looking caused the thief to walk off. I didn't figure out what he was doing until the next day when the object of his attempted theft said something. Those are the kind of issues you might have south of Adams.

Other issues will be loud neighbors, grunginess of some front and backyards and trash cans, and the possibility that any apartment might not have a laundry on the premise, or will not have enough parking for you.

If you have a particular block in mind, I can give it a drive by if you want an opinion.

Bottom line: If you're a guy you can live in all parts of Normal Heights just fine, though maybe you should avoid having a flashy Japanese car. If you're a girl, that's harder to say. Girls get freaked out by a bit of grunginess. If you're a guy who's a drug dealer, well, you can be shot dead anywhere if you get involved in that sort of activity.

As Sassberto said North of Adams is better, though there will still be flaws in your environment. I considered buying in the northern part of Normal Heights and couldn't quite afford it. If you're buying try to get two blocks north of Adams.

Last edited by kettlepot; 06-10-2007 at 09:09 PM.. Reason: additional text
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Old 06-10-2007, 10:27 PM
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Adams is fine. There's the occasional homeless person or weirdo but its really NOT bad at all, i used to walk around there at all hours.

Lots of San Diegans will say a neighborhood is ghetto if theres ANYTHING at all wrong with it, because they are snobs.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:55 AM
169 posts, read 726,730 times
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In my opinion...Normal Heights isn't that bad...depending on where you stay at. Let me break it down like this...

I been livin in Normal Heights since 89, 38th and El Cajon

Normal Heights...is funny. My block had shootings, robberies, a SWAT standoffs, etc. While I knew skaters type dudes that stayed on the other side of Adams who never seen any parts of that type of activity. Most crime is south of Adams, but there cleaning up around there so in 2007 I would say its more south of Madison

Normal Heights has crime in pockets, but as an overall area its not that bad, at least not to me. And honestly you can say this for ALOT of communities in SD. Been here my whole life and I can say there are very few places that are just overall bad areas
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Old 07-17-2007, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by FunkyMonk View Post
Adams is fine. There's the occasional homeless person or weirdo but its really NOT bad at all, i used to walk around there at all hours.

Lots of San Diegans will say a neighborhood is ghetto if theres ANYTHING at all wrong with it, because they are snobs.

And that doesn't happen anywhere else? You're kidding me... I currently live in a small town and they have a neighborhood that locals call 'bad'. It makes the best suburb in San Diego look more 'ghetto'. LOL
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:36 AM
Location: California
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Default Normal Heights

I lived off Adams between Adams and El Cajon with my wife and three kids for 2yrs. We loved the mixed neighborhood and the location (close to downtown, and everywhere else we wanted to go. There are lots of parks within bike riding distance. Morely field. Balboa park. And a YMCA nearby. However it was a mixed neighborhood in the sense of incomes as well. There was a lady living two houses down from us that had like 3 Benzes and not old ones. On the other side of us was section 8 housing. We had a avid crack user upstairs with a balcony that looked into our yard. We were in a house behind a house. A common theme in that neighborhood. While living there, we had several kids at several different instances that came into our fenced in yard without permission under the guise that they were looking for a ball. What they were really doing was checking to see if any of our bikes were not locked up (which they all were). We also had a vacuum cleaner thrown through our living room window. We called 911 as it had happened at about 11pm and it took until almost 2am before the police showed up, because supposedly there was a shooting in the neighborhood that all units were dispatched to. There was also a liquor store on the corner that I saw in the paper was robbed at least 3 times in the 2yrs we lived there. But, I never felt in danger of personal attack, mugging or that kind of thing while living there.
Hope that is helpful.
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Old 07-19-2007, 03:06 AM
Location: Sandy Eggo - Kensington
4,536 posts, read 9,864,964 times
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Like most here have already said, Normal Heights isn't a bad area, especially the areas north of Adams Ave. South of Adams but north of El Cajon is hit and miss as both Sass and eastsandiego said. My description: Very neighborhoody, eclectic (1920's homes next door to older apartment buildings), few chain restaurants and stores/mostly independent businesses, centrally located and close to the other cool 'hoods (Hillcrest, University Heights, North Park, Kensington, etc.), good coffeeshops and townie bars, definitely on the upswing and getting better, interesting mix of people (hipsters, gays, older folks who've lived there for 50 years, Mexican families.....you know, everything that makes for an interesting neighborhood ...

You've gotten some good advice from everyone here.
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Old 07-19-2007, 03:15 PM
1,174 posts, read 5,927,648 times
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niferdoodle, if you're still around -

I'll toss in my perspective as a native San Diegan who grew up in the City and County in the 60's, 70's and 80's. It included areas such as Claremont, University City, and Del Mar over time. I may no longer live there, but I still have economic conections to my hometown.

Normal Heights was always known as an older, lower income, and bad area. There are much worse areas, but Normal Heights is still not an area to raise children, to feel safe in your home, and to walk the streets at night, unless you are completely blind to societal realities.

Even when the City was smaller and less troubled in the 60's and 70's, the general rule of thumb was to not go south of Highway 8. The nicer, safer, and cleaner parts of town were north of it. That doesn't include Normal Heights.

The same goes for today. For example, although development got rid of nasty places like Horton Plaza years ago, the downtown area where the buses turned around and the sailors picked up the hookers in front of the porno theaters, and gentrified the urban environment, the old problems of that area did not go away. They were just pushed into other areas, including but not limited to Normal Heights. It's issues like that, of which many people don't have a historical undrstanding, that keep them from seeing how the region has become even worse and increasingly unsafe over time.

So, that's the perspective of someone with a history and ties to the region. Good luck with your decision and search.
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