East San Jose Lifestyle And History

East San Jose Communities

Alum Rock District, Evergreen District, and Silver Creek Valley District.

East San Jose Lifestyle

Nestled below the hills of the Diablo range and Mt. Hamilton, East San Jose boasts a diverse suburban community. Public attractions in adjacent regions include SAP Center, CEFCU Stadium, Excite Baseball Park, the San Jose Convention Center, and Santa Clara County Fairgrounds. The economic hub of East San Jose revolves around Eastridge Mall.

East San Jose History

Like much of the valley in East San Jose, farming, ranching, and orchards created the economic base. The change began in the latter half of the 20th century. During the latter half of the 20th century, industry expansion created a mix of income levels. This rise in income increased the spread of suburbia.

East San Jose’s lifestyle and history have always had a rich blend of hard-working folks from many cultures. Witness these small community cultures in the Mexican Heritage Plaza, Little Portugal, Little Saigon, and the Overfelt Chinese Cultural Garden. City life proliferated along the 680 and 101 freeway corridors in the 1970s. This growth includes a stint where the long-unfinished freeway interchange between 101 and 280 was dubbed “the bridge to nowhere” by National Geographic. With the interchange freeway long finished, the roads serve as a bridge to somewhere — for workers living in East San Jose to get to Silicon Valley jobs.

César Chávez lived here and worked for decades to gain equal rights and wages for minority workers. This task echoed in the slowness of the area to find modern development. Still, today the suburban nature of the city has not overwhelmed the region’s cultural heritage.

View of East San Jose from Mt. Hamilton
Alum Rock District

The modern history of the Alum Rock District began in 1777. Alum Rock was part of the Spanish pueblo system. At its core, Alum Rock Park served as a significant getaway spot for residents in the  San Jose area. A rail line served the Park from the 1890s, and hundreds of thousands of tourists flocked to its destination. As the city grew and access to other places became more available, the Park reverted to a more natural environment. In 1911, the 

Alum Rock district incorporated as San Jose and joined a more suburban setting.

Evergreen District

One of the most recent areas in San Jose to be developed is Evergreen. Evergreen once hosted one of the first airports in the state, where barnstormers and death-defying air displays thrilled crowds. This airport eventually moved to the current site at Reid-Hillview airport, where it remains one of the busiest light aircraft airports in the nation. It also hosted one of the pioneers in aviation when John J. Montgomery tested his newfangled contraptions in the foothills above the current Evergreen Valley College in 1911.

East San Jose is home to East Ridge Mall, which opened in 1971. At that time, it was the largest shopping mall in the United States. Eastridge Mall has been an anchor for the economy in East San Jose as it converted to a suburban focus. The mall’s hosted scenes for movies such as “Logan’s Run,” and you can always find fun at the mall.

Evergreen multiplied in the wild expansion days of the 1970s and ’80s. As with its sister district Alum Rock to the north, Evergreen boasted a culturally diverse community. The Evergreen area was once known as the “Lowrider” capital of northern California.

Silver Creek Valley District

Perhaps the last central district added to San Jose and developed is the Silver Creek Valley area. This area features a more upscale community. The spot focused on ranch homes and country clubs. Mostly nestled between foothills, the site is rich with natural beauty and, though a short ride from the hustle and bustle of the city, an area where its residents can feel a world away.

Explore East San Jose

East San Jose Real Estate Listings

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That SV Life Real Estate & Community
110 N 3rd St #20
San Jose, CA 95112

Realty Executives Silicon Valley
117 Bernal Rd Suite 70-638
San Jose, CA 95119



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