While other neighborhoods have a more documented past, few neighborhoods in Los Angeles have a more vibrant present than Silver Lake.
In starts and fits, the cultural center of Los Angeles seems to have shifted east – and settled nicely in and around Silver lake. Any Angelino can attest to the fact that if you peruse almost any news source, the LA Weekly, NPR, the LA Times, TMZ – any publication or media hub, there is an inordinate awaresness of and love for Silver Lake. It has been know as an epicenter for music for more than a decade with the annual Sunset Junction festival as well is being home to dozens of bands (Elliott Smith, Vampire Weekend, Beck, Bret McKenzie and the Red Hot Chili Peppers – Flea started a music conservatory for kids that is a staple in the neighborhood). The Silver Sun Pickup is named after a liquor store on the corners of Sunset and Silver Lake Blvds and Dangerbird Recors and Epitaph Records are record labels both hang their shingles in Silver Lake.
Neighborhood At A Glance
Silver Lake is the epitome of the “trendy” neighborhood in Los Angeles. It boasts a population of close to 33,000 across its nearly 3 square miles. The vibrant area, predictably, is inhabited by a large amount of younger professionals. Specifically, the # of individuals who are between the ages of 19-34 who live in the area are among Los Angeles county’s highest.
Amongst other things, Silver Lake is famous for its architecture; landmark Spanish homes were built in the 20′s and 30′s prior to the arrival of the mid-century magnates. All of the greats have work in neighborhood (including Lautner, Neutra, Schindler, Ain, Wright and Keoning).
Contraty to popular belief, the neighborhood is not named for the appearance of the reservoir located at it’s center, but rather Herman Silver – a member of LA’s first board of water commission – who was crucial to the creation of the Reservoir in the earlier 1900s.
The Silver Lake Neighborhood Council is occupied with neighborhood development, safety, events and overall prosperity of the neighborhood. The residents are welcome to join the committee and participate in local government.
Silver Lake Area Schools
In a city known for its shoddy – and aspiring public schools, Silver Lake is fortunate to be home to 1 of the city’s most highly prized public elementary schools.
Ivanhoe Elementary is historically (and consistently) rewarded schools for its scores and role in the neighborhood.
Micheltorena Elementary is demonstrating growth and innovation over the last couple years and is receiving scores rivaling that of its more publicly touted counterparts.
Cornerstone Academy is a K-12 private school offering Silver Lake’s only full high school education. They boast small classes with individualized curriculums.
Silver Lake is a hilly neighborhood that lies on two reservoirs. The lower lake is named after Herman Silver while the upper got its name after Ivanhoe, the Sir Walter Scott´s novel. 600,000 homes are provided with water from these two reservoirs maintained by LA Department of Water & Power. Around the reservoirs is the Silver Lake Recreation Center with numerous sport facilities, the Silver Lake Dog Park, and the Silver Lake Meadow.
During the 20th century, Silver Lake was home to various film studios such as Walt Disney, Tom Mix, The Mack Sennet Studios and Talmadge. In the last twenty years, Silver Lake has become the center of the alternative and rock indie music scene in LA. It is home to several festivals, including the Sunset Junction Festival, Silver Lake Jubilee and Sunset Junction Street Fair.
This area has been attractive to artists, musicians, and modernist architects like Richard Neutra and Rudolf Schindler. Plenty of cafe bars, boutiques, and shops are found along the streets of Silver Lake.
The Silver Lake library branch is one of the better designed libraries in the city, a multistory building made mostly of glass and steel.
If you’re looking to buy or sell a house in Silver Lake, contact us – we live in and love this neighborhood; the offices of Johnny Johnston at Compass Realty