The original town of Willow Glen was founded in 1927 and annexed by San Jose in 1936, as were many other any adjacent areas that have developed since then. One of the many historical and unique districts within San Jose, Willow Glen is located south and slightly west of downtown. The traditional boundaries of Willow Glen are the Guadalupe River, Los Gatos Creek, and Coe and Curtner Avenues, though many adjacent areas are usually included today.
Downtown Willow Glen is on Lincoln Avenue, generally between Coe and Minnesota Avenues, and is well maintained due to the efforts of the Willow Glen Neighborhood Association (WGNA). The WGNA is a grassroots community organization similar to many other neighborhood organizations which is dedicated to the enhancement and preservation of the neighborhood, focusing on issues such as land use, planning, traffic, safety, open space, parks and recreation within the city. The organization recently played a part in the restoration of Los Gatos Creek, which has increased the value and beauty of the city, while providing a beautiful trail on which to bike, run, or walk.
One of the benefits of living in Willow Glen is the easy access to transportation. The Bay Area Rapid Transit has a station in the city that is within walking distance for many and is near a large child-care center. Residents also have access to a Caltrain station and park and ride lots. Highways 17 and 280 are close by, with downtown San Jose easily accessible by side streets.
Area schools are among some of the best in the nation. As part of a unique program designed to prepare students for college, the district allows students to choose their middle and high schools. At the elementary level, children are generally assigned to their neighborhood school, although the district also has three magnet elementary schools that can be chosen. After elementary school, however, students and parents decide where their children will attend school next. District schools hold tours to allow families to learn more about them and get their questions answered. Their goal is to help each child to find the campus that meets his or her special needs and desires.
Willow Glen is a city that has managed to retain its small town charm while still giving residents access to all the amenities of a major metropolitan area. San Jose is known as the "Capital of Silicon Valley". It is California's third largest city and considered the epicenter for information technology with about 1,500 of the nation's 2,500 largest electronics firms.
San Jose is well known for its Mediterranean climate averaging 300 days of sunshine and an annual average temperature of 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Several professional sports franchises make their home in San Jose including the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League and the San Jose Giants minor league affiliate. Within a short drive are San Francisco, quaint Los Gatos, Stanford University, the beaches at Santa Cruz, galleries in Carmel or the tide pools and golf courses of Monterey. Locally there are various services and amenities to choose from including numerous retail shops and stores.
Named for the Pueblo de San Jose de Guadalupe in 1777, San Jose was the first civil settlement in California and the first state capital. It was also the first major city with a woman mayor and is home to a new convention and cultural center. Shopping centers, museums, recreational areas and parks abound.
Since 1984 more than $1 billion has been invested in downtown San Jose's renaissance. Among the highlights: the 140 million San Jose McEnery Convention center, a transit mall that is the focal point of the ultra-modern 20-mile long light rail system; the largest children's museum on the West Coast; and the San Jose Arena. There are countless exciting attractions and colorful festivals, art exhibits, musical performances, and award-winning restaurants.
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