Glen Park has many benefits as a neighborhood, such as having its own BART Station, easy highway access, diverse housing options, and is adjacent to Glen Canyon Park, from which it gets its name. The neighborhood is located in the southern central part of the city, just north of Highway 280. Therefore, it is outside of the City’s “fog belt” and gets some sun on foggy days until the fog covers the entire city. The topography is hilly, which can be a challenge, but it also adds to the neighborhood’s charm.
Glen Park, like a few other neighborhoods, has a higher than average proportion of single-family homes. However, you can also find regular apartments; “flats,” which is where the apartment covers the entire building floor as opposed to having two or more units on one floor; garden apartments, though rare; and the occasional in-law apartments, which are basically a converted basement and/or garage. So, whatever you are looking for as far as living arrangements, you can find it in Glen Park, if you are patient, and for the right price.
The neighborhood’s location is somewhat sequestered from the rest of San Francisco and is, therefore, a quieter area. Some like this type of atmosphere, but others might like a more exciting place to live, such as North Beach or the Mission. That said, Glen Park’s quiet atmosphere makes it a very safe area in general. Though, like always, you still need to be careful and take the precautions needed when living in any major city in the U.S. For more information, check out this website for up-to-date crime data in the area: www.spotcrime.com.
As noted, Glen Park is lucky enough to have its own BART Station. Only two other neighborhoods have that good fortune: the other one is the Mission, which has two BART stations, and the second one is Ingleside, which has a BART Station at Balboa Park serving the City College of San Francisco. As you may already know, BART can connect you to downtown San Francisco, the Peninsula, and the East Bay.
Parking and traffic are typically not all that bad in Glen Park, except during peak hours around the BART Station, next to the Highway 280 ingress and egress. However, once you get into the actual neighborhood, there is no actual traffic, and on-street parking can be found, though it may not be exactly in front of your destination.
As always, I will recommend biking as your first option to getting around. Bike Route 45, which runs through Chenery Street, is the main bike lane to get you to other City parts. From there, you can head onto San Jose Avenue, which is a wide and busy road, but it will afford you the option to turn onto less busy streets, as well as other bike lanes. Also, one thing to consider is the topography. Glen Park is very hilly. Therefore, there will be some streets that are more challenging but doable nonetheless. Additionally, you can take your bike on BART if some days you don’t feel like biking that much.
Shopping, Dining, and Entertainment
Diamond and Chenery Streets are the main commercial corridors in Glen Park. And although they are not as big as other neighborhood commercial corridors, you can find great cafes and restaurants, a bank, urgent care, cleaners, and stores of all kinds. One of my favorite shops is Bird & Beckett Books and Records and the Cheese Boutique; both on Chenery Street.
There are no large chain markets in Glen Park. However, Canyon Market offers a wide variety of grocery options, which are healthy and tasty. Also, Buddies Market and Glen Park Market are corner food stores that sell liquor and other groceries.
Parks and Recreation
There are various smaller green areas around the neighborhood, such as Dorothy Erskine Park, Walter Haas Playground, and Billy Goat Hill, which are actually on the border with Noe Valley. However, the “green” jewel of Glen Park is Glen Canon Park, located at the northwest corner of Bosworth and Elk Streets. The recreation area has a soccer field, playground, recreation center, and a hiking area, extending all the way up to Portola Drive, about half a mile away. It is a great place to walk around, have a picnic, let your dog(s) run and explore, or hang out and read a book under a tree. Glen Canyon Park should not be missed.
Schools and Libraries
Glen Park School, which is located just south of Bosworth Street on Lippard Avenue, is a K-5 elementary school, which has a good reputation and a bi-literacy program in place, among other interesting programs. Visit their webpage at www.glenparkschool.org for more information.
St. John’s School, located at 925 Chenery Street, is located at 925 Chenery Street and is a private K-8 Catholic school. The school, based on its reviews and word of mouth, has a good reputation and the parents and the kids who attend the school are generally happy with the curriculum. For more information, visit their website at www.stjohnseagles.com.
The Glen Park Branch Library is located at 2825 Diamond Street. It is a relatively newer building, especially compared to the older and more historic buildings of other San Francisco neighborhood libraries. In any event, they have a large selection of books, videos, magazines, etc., as well as programs for kids, such as reading circles and other events. Visit their website at https://sfpl.org/locations/glen-park.