Avondale is part of Riverside Avondale
The Avondale Neighborhood is the other half the Riverside Avondale Historic District. This area is located just southwest of Riverside. The Avondale story starts about 10 years or so after Riverside. After the great fire in 1901 Jacksonville citizens began looking for places to live further out from the core, and so they went to Riverside, but that soon began to fill up with the workers of Jacksonville and so, like today, people wanted to live further out and away from the core of the downtown. This is when Avondale first began.
The presence of Telfair Stockton in Avondale
A man named Telfair Stockton (Stockton Street, Stockton Park, Stockton Elementary, etc) first conceived that the neighborhood would be created with 4 primary streets, Avondale, Challen, Edgewood, and Talbot. This land was former Magnolia farms and until Stockton came along was used mostly to hunt wild game. Originally planned as a “Whites Only” community, this area became Jacksonville’s first real suburb of people who worked downtown, but who wanted to live away from their workers in Riverside and Springfield.
Originally constructed in an old cow field in 1927 Robert E. Lee High School would go on to produce some of the most interesting graduates including the band mates from Lynyrd Skynyrd, who claim they took their name from an old PE teacher from the school who was constantly kicking band mates out of the school for having long hair during the 70s. A walk able and bike able area, the neighborhood was one of the first neighborhoods in Jacksonville to have a streetcar line, and in fact Aberdeen still features some of the brick work where the streetcars traveled through the neighborhood. You can see the Walk Score for each home when you click on it. What is Walk Score? It helps you understand how you can use the neighborhood for your errands.
Avondale features many wonderful entertainment districts. Some of the best restaurants are featured in Avondale along Park Street or St. Johns Avenue. Few commercial districts are located in neighborhood. The residents did not want to have them in the neighborhood, so they would travel to Riverside, 5-Points or Downtown. Many residents moved to the neighborhood to escape from Riverside and downtown hustle and bustle.
Short Commute to Downtown Jacksonville
Commuting wise its a short drive of less than 10 minutes from the neighborhood to downtown Jacksonville. There is bus service from JTA along Park Street as well as St. Johns Avenue and further around US 17 or Roosevelt Blvd as it is also known. There is a trolley service that runs during the weekends to help folks commute back and forth inside of the neighborhood. Numerous events are held in the community during the year including Christmas in Avondale, a charity 5k, as well as Fourth of July parties. The Historic Neighborhood is a very special one and as part of the Riverside Avondale Community, is also rich in historic structures. A tour of homes happens in the Spring and don’t forget Luminaria the last Sunday before Christmas, when white bags with candles line the streets of neighborhood. If Avondale is not for you, why not look at some of our other featured neighborhoods.
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