Founded in 1888, the name "University" comes from both the proximity to the street and the plan to build a branch of University of Southern California in the area. That plan was scrapped and the tract of land earmarked for the school was used for the State Normal School. Currently, the site is occupied by San Diego Unified School District.
The area’s population grew after the Panama-California Exposition in 1915. An electric Trolley owned by John Spreckles transported people to the area, and a beautiful botanic park, Mission Cliff Gardens, which was a premier destination for San Diegans until the end of the first world war.
Today the river rock walls of Mission Cliff Gardens still stand, and within the neighborhood behind the wall is a beautiful planter converted from the grand fountain, once the showcase of Mission Cliff Gardens. Trolley Barn park is a great gathering spot for the neighborhood—don’t miss the free concerts and movies in the summer!
Rich in history, University Heights boasts not only great shops and restaurants near Park and Adams Ave, but the unique and varied architecture of the homes makes this a favorite Metro area neighborhood.