University Heights in Springfield dates back to before there were Beatles and has been a mainstay for fine Springfield living ever since. We reached out to the current residents in the neighborhood to see what they love best about living in University Heights. People love it for many reasons, but we’re going to share the top ten things that make living in University Heights one of the most desirable destination in town!
#1 The Location
University Heights is just south of Phelps Grove Park and just north of Mercy Hospital. It’s close enough to downtown that a Lyft isn’t going to cost you a ton and far enough away that you won’t have to try to sleep amongst the rowdiness of a pub crawl.
#2 The Art Museum
We’ve seen some pretty cool backyards in our day, but having a celebrated art museum within shouting distance has to be at the top of the list. The Springfield Art Museum might be known for the french fries, but it’s got way more up its sleeve than just its famous sculpture. There are world class exhibits displayed there all the time! Even if you weren’t an art history major, it’s a must see.
#3 The Architecture
University Heights is full of unique properties. You won’t find two homes that are exactly alike. If character is on your checklist, this neighborhood is going to be at the top of your list. The best part is the variety. There are mid-century style homes, classic bungalows, stunning craftsmans and plenty more.
#4 Phelps Grove Park
Phelps Grove has been a gathering place for Springfieldians for over a century. Its beautiful shady grounds are the perfect place to enjoy a slice of nature right in the middle of the city. In its 31 acres, there’s enough room to host a little league baseball practice, a barbecue under the historic pavilion, or a peaceful jog at first light. It has also partnered with its neighbor the aforementioned Springfield Art Museum to display sculptures.
#5 The Restaurants
There are too many great restaurants to list within a few miles of the neighborhood. Downtown Springfield is just minutes away, but two of Springfield’s most iconic restaurants are within walking distance. Bambino’s Italian Cafe is a staple of Italian cuisine in the city and has been for many years. This particular location was once used as a corner grocery store before becoming what it is today. You can expect great service and tasty, affordable food at Bambino’s. Just across National is the beloved first location of Mexican Villa, perhaps Springfield’s best known Mexican restaurant. It’s famous for its burrito enchilada style, which is nearly as famous as cashew chicken. Both are great choices for a quick stroll for lunch or dinner.
#6 The Resale Value
The average home price in University Heights in the past 12 months from this article was $259,359 with a range of $142,000 to $720,000. There’s something for nearly any price range and they appreciate at consistent rates. Just five years ago, the average in University Heights was $226,082 according to MLS data. That’s a 13% increase in the average value in just five years! The bottom line is that living in University Heights will never go out of style. If you decide to move, there will be interested buyers lining up. We know some folks who can help you out with that too.
#7 The Walking & Biking Trails
Many of the residents of University Heights enjoy an active lifestyle and love using the nearby Fassnight Greenway for biking, walking and jogging. It’s a beautiful paved trail through the heart of the city and it intersects with another awesome trail called the Link that goes from Twin Oaks park to Doling Park, giving you a nice north-to-south option as well.
#8 The Mature Trees
It sounds simple, but when we asked folks what they loved most about living in the neighborhood, many of them said the beautiful trees. University Heights has a vast array of mature trees that provide a peaceful ambience to the neighborhood. It also helps keep temperatures down a bit in the summer and gives the area gorgeous backdrop during the fall.
#9 It’s Dog Friendly
The current residents we spoke with mentioned how much they loved seeing their neighbors’ dogs. There are a lot of them roaming around with their owners because it’s such a scenic place to have a stroll. We’re big fans of pups too, so we can totally relate to this one. But with good dogs usually comes good owners and that takes us to …
#10 The Neighbors
Consistently in the responses we got from current residents, people raved about their neighbors. One person said they were impressed with how much people were willing to help their neighbors, even if they hadn’t spent much time together. It’s a tight-knit community with a killer Facebook group and plenty of neighborhood functions. They’d love to welcome you into the fold and we’d love to help you find you place there!
Special thanks to Jan Peterson and the University Heights Facebook Group for the assist on this article!
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