NB San Diego, CA (32nd Street Naval Station) Local InformationNaval Base San Diego is in San Diego, California. San Diego is a major city, with about 1.3 million people, and is in San Diego County, which has a population of about 3.1 million people. Other nearby smaller communities include National City (58,000), Chula Vista (245,000), and La Mesa (58,000); the city of San Diego takes up a large area, and includes a great many urban village neighborhoods.
It is only about 3 miles from downtown San Diego to NB San Diego, taking about 10 minutes, the average commute time in the city is about 23 minutes. San Diego is a large city with congested traffic and travel times depend on traffic as much as distance.
Local Housing Rental Prices: The average apartment rent in the San Diego area ranges from $900 to $1500 per month, with a median of about $1200 per month.
Local Housing Purchase Prices: The average price for a house in San Diego is about $600,000, compared to $525,000 for California. The average price for a townhouse in San Diego is about $425,000.
Short Description of the Area: San Diego is the second largest city in California and one of the ten largest in the USA. The area has a strong local economy, generally pleasant climate, many local parks, a natural deepwater harbor, many beaches, a busy downtown with global ties, and many world-class museums and cultural locations. San Diego is ranked as a generally safe city, with a low crime rate and good public services. San Diego is on the US-Mexico border, one of the strategic cornerstones of the USA, and defended by the US Navy and US Marine Corps.
Climate and Weather: The area has a moderate, dry climate, with winter temperatures of the mid-60s to high 40s and summer temperatures in the mid-70s to high 60s. The area has generally clear days through most of the year with little rain. Summers are warm but generally not hot and winters are mild. May and/or June can suffer from overcast (May Grey or June Gloom); September to February are often very dry, under the influence of the Santa Ana WInds, but this reverses in middle to late February, with up to 7" of winter rain.
Transportation in San Diego is mostly by car - this is Southern California - but San Diego does have a well developed transit system, including a full bus network and light rail line, the MTS Trolley (the Blue Line runs near NB San Diego; the Pacific Fleet Station is about a half mile from base), and the Sprinter and Coaster rail systems for local travel without having to deal with traffic.
San Diego is a city of many neighborhoods, over 100 by some counts. The city recognizes 52 major neighborhoods, each with its own character. Near NB San Diego, clockwise from northwest, are the Barrio Logan, Logan Heights, Southcrest, and Shelltown neighborhoods, and southeast of base is National City, another city in San Diego County. Other nearby neighborhoods include downtown San Diego, Little Italy, several marinas, harborside and coastal neighborhoods, the famous Gaslamp Quarter, condo and loft sections, and riverside areas.
Barrio Logan is immediately northwest of NB San Diego, and is a historically Hispanic-Chicano neighborhood; it is the southeast part of Logan Heights (both named for a 19th Century Congressman). This community is noted for Chicano Park, a park under the San Diego-Coronado Bridge, and site of murals created mainly by local artists.
Southcrest was formerly part of Shelltown (and many locals still think of it this way). It is notable for the excellent local park and community center, Southcrest Community Park.
Shelltown is one of the older neighborhoods in San Diego, named either for the shells on the beach - filled in now, to make the land NB San Diego is now on - or for the Quonset Huts that once made up a large number of local buildings. This neighborhood is populated largely by Mexican-Americans and Filipino-Americans, and local parks show murals painted by local artists.
National City is another city, but borders NB San Diego.
San Diego's Old Town is the oldest section of the city, dating to the 1700s, and home of several local museums and historic houses, and live historical performances, and the Sheriff's Museum.
Balboa Park was once where the Marine Barracks was stationed, and today is where San Diego keeps many museums, several botanical gardens, a zoo, and theaters including a Shakespearean theatre.,
Downtown San Diego is in walking or transit distance (about 3 miles) of base. This area is the home of several museums, the Padres' home stadium, and many local theaters, from mainstream to high art.
The Gaslamp Quarter is a renovated section of town, once a bustling commercial area with new-fangled gas lamps, then a run down section and now a newly reborn area with day shopping and nightlife.
Coronado is a small city (24,000) on the Bay harbor; most residents are high-income, but the city has some excellent beaches and parks, and is home to NB Coronado. This was also the site of some of the first military aviation in the US. Coronado is also home of the Hotel del Coronado, a large resort hotel with a long history, with a list of celebrity guests; and was also a casualty station in WWII, and has been featured in several movies. The Hotel is the rambling, Hogwart's-looking place on the oceanside of Coronado.
Point Loma is on the northwest horn of the Bay, and is where California began - it's where Spanish explorers first landed in what would be California, in 1542, and today is home of a neighborhood of about 45,000 and NB Point Loma; it formerly was the location of NTC San Diego and once Fort Rosecrans, a US Army coastal battery.
Ocean Beach is north of Point Loma; this is a relaxed seaside residential community with a local goal of staying local and not becoming a site for national chains; unique retail is standard here. This area also hosts the OB Air Force, a population of feral parrots.
Mesas and Canyons: An observant person may note that the local settlements are generally on mesa tops, with canyons left green. This is partly for stormwater drainage, partly because the canyons are usually too narrow to develop, and partly to create greenbelt breaks. This can be confusing for navigating - a street that should run through may very well end in a cliffside.
Tijuana is a Mexican city right on the US-Mexico border, only about half an hour south. It is a generally modern city, with a thriving cross-border trade including tourism, but it is not the US and reasonable caution should be exercised. Warning: Military ID alone does not necessarily allow easy re-entry into the US.