East of the heart of downtown Atlanta, you will find Kirkwood, a neighborhood with a nationally decorated designation. From its well-preserved historic homes to its history as a major battle site during the Civil War, Kirkwood is a preservation of times past, while also boasting one of the top-ranked neighborhoods in Atlanta today.
If you are considering the real estate in the area and have children, there are several schooling options available to you. The main schools in Kirkwood are the following:
- Fred A. Toomer Elementary School
- Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School
- Maynard H. Jackson High School
- Charles Drew Charter School
Each of these neighborhood public schools has positive elements to enjoy. Toomer Elementary has embraced a self-image emphasis that aims to improve social skills, alongside academic awareness. King Middle, though traditionally performing low on test scores, is implementing a curriculum designed to reach national averages. Jackson High School is located at one of the most beautiful campuses in Atlanta, with brick buildings that were heavily renovated in the past five years.
Many Kirkwood parents, however, prefer to send their children to the area’s charter schools. As recently as 2012, Drew Charter School was selected as the best charter school in the state of Georgia. While most students at the schools live in the Villages of East Lake neighborhood, Kirkwood students are eligible to fill remaining spots, with a lottery deciding attendees, if necessary. Still, Ivy Preparatory Academy is another charter school in the area to consider.
The average price of homes in the neighborhood is approximately $217,000. If you are looking to rent apartments, condos or houses, you can expect to pay $950 to $1,100, on average. There is a very even split between residents who rent and those who own homes. Homes for sale in the area largely reflect craftsman and Victorian styles, although contemporary, new construction houses are also readily available. The Kirkwood Historic District is one of the largest historic districts in Georgia, and its longstanding homes were accepted into the National Register of Historic Places in 2009.
Crimes rates in Kirkwood are somewhat mixed. In the past year, the murder rate in the area was slightly above national averages, but property crimes, along with many other types of violent crimes, have comparatively low rates of reportage.
Downtown Kirkwood is its own unique destination. Though Kirkwood is right near the heart of the big city of Atlanta, its downtown has the look and feel of a small town on the outskirts of the suburbs. It has its own public library, post office and police station, and shopping options nearby include a number of restaurants, coffee shops, salons, art galleries and bars. Some of the best restaurants in the neighborhood include:
- Sun in My Belly, a brunch and full-service catering company on the north end of Kirkwood with an interesting name, unexpected decorations and great food.
- Ann’s Snack Bar, a burger eatery on the southern end of Kirkwood known for its “Ghetto Burger,” which the Wall Street Journal, at one point, identified as the single-best burger in the United States.
Residents can also enjoy several unique festivals and events in the neighborhood each year. The Kirkwood Spring Fling is a festival with music, local food, beer and a tour of Kirkwood homes. It is held at Bessie Branham Park. The community also hosts an annual wine stroll in the summer, during which residents can visit local shops to taste wines from all over the globe, along with a giant Easter egg hunt the Saturday before Easter, a holiday tree-lighting community event and a wide-ranging commemoration of the neighborhood’s significance in the Civil War’s Battle of Atlanta each July, which includes a 5k run, a house tour, a gala and a reenactment of battle scenes.
Walkability in Kirkwood is excellent, as there is plenty to do in the area, and its proximity to downtown staples makes it an ideal location. For longer commutes or trips, the MARTA stops at Candler Park and East Lake nearby, MARTA bus 24 travels to downtown Oakhurst and bus 21 heads to Georgia State University, as well as Oakland Cemetery.
The neighborhood is also highly diverse. The 5,000 residents who call Kirkwood home are a mix of college and high-school educated individuals. The median household income is $65,055, which is fairly close to the national average.
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