Downtown Orlando– “You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby!”
If time travelers from “Y2K-era” Orlando crash landed in downtown today, they’d probably spend some time double checking their map for accuracy.
And the confusion would be understandable!
Teeming with new life and new residents, Downtown Orlando is in full renaissance mode–with no signs of peaking any time soon. A perfect illustration of what can happen when cities go all-in on urban investment, it’s now a beacon for a growing number of home buyers eschewing suburban sprawl for the culture, walkability– and sense of community urban life has to offer.
And there’s a lot of new here!
Just a sampling of what our time traveler would see for the first time:
The SunRail light rail system, The Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Orlando City Stadium, Amway Center, UCF’s Creative Village—- and a slew of new artisanal restaurants and boutique shops that signal urban cool. (Summerlin Ave even boasts its own candle foundry). Meanwhile downtown has not just one but two more ax- throwing spaces within half a mile of each other!
Downtown Orlando Real Estate
All this investment (plus the lure of ditching the car in favor of electric scooters) has meant a huge demand for housing. This area is trending among several demos—hottest among young professionals and empty nesters/baby boomers, it’s also a hit among a growing subset of families who love having so much for kids to do so close at hand.
High rise condos, shiny glassy buildings with views of Lake Eola and the city skyline, newly- constructed townhomes and a burgeoning rental market are giving would-be residents plenty of options to choose from.
Historic Neighborhoods in Downtown Orlando
But the more things change, the more they also stay the same. Condo living isn’t the only choice for living downtown. Enter the adjacent neighborhoods of Thornton Park and Lake Eola Heights. These brick-lined and connected hoods are about as historic as homeowners in Central Florida can hope to find without living in an orange grove.Officially recognized with historical designations, homes here are preserved in their original architectural style and proudly display bronze placards indicating the year they were built.
Naturally, these neighborhoods are a huge draw with homebuyers seeking out the unique charm and style of wood- frame cottages and brick bungalows from the 1900s-1950s that you just don’t see everywhere. This area is also among the few places in Orlando zoned for carriage houses—a huge appeal for home buyers looking for a source of rental income or office/studio space close at hand.
Locations are of course, a prime draw. Walking distance to downtown and Lake Eola, residents here never need pay for parking at the Sunday Farmers Market or fight traffic after the Fourth of July Fireworks display or any of the myriad of arts and crafts events at Lake Eola or free concerts downtown.
But what residents most love is the special mix of people these neighborhoods brings together. Any given street will find a mix of young singles and growing families along with residents who have lived in their homes since before Mickey Mouse came to town. On the weekend you can find all of them sitting outside having a craft beer or coldbrew coffee together at Eola General. Lake Eola Heights even has its own community garden.
So move in and grab a plot!
Downtown Orlando Homes for Sale
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