The city of Gardena in Los Angeles County’s South Bay region is known as “Freeway City” because it is bordered by the Harbor (I-110), Artesia (SR91), and San Diego (I-405) freeways, and has easy access to I-105 and I-710. Gardena’s central location also places it just 20 minutes to Los Angeles Airport, 15 minutes to Downtown Los Angeles, and 15 minutes to Manhattan Beach.
Gardena has a highly diverse population of around 60,000. The city has been named an All-America City by the National Civic League, recognizing the efforts of Gardena residents and businesses to work together on various community programs to improve their city and resolve local issues.
Gardena was part of Rancho San Pedro, a Spanish land grant given to Juan Jose Dominguez in the 1800s. The property was renamed Rosecrans Rancho after it was purchased by Union Army General William Starke Rosecrans following the Civil War. It’s believed that the first settlement in Gardena Valley was started by Spencer R. Thorpe on what is now the intersection of 161st Street and Figueroa.
There are several reports as to how the city got its name, but the most likely version is that it was named by Spencer Thorpe’s daughter, who was inspired by the lushness of the valley formed by the nearby Laguna Dominguez slough and channel.
Gardena incorporated as a city of Los Angeles County in 1930, combining the communities of Gardena, Moneta, and Strawberry Park. It was largely agricultural and was a major supplier of strawberries and other berry varieties in the United States. Urbanization came in the 1950s as the South Bay population swelled and residential developments replaced farmlands.
Real Estate and Property Types
Homes in Gardena are a good mix of single-family and multifamily properties. Around half of the housing stock is made up of single-family homes, while the rest are multifamily properties with highly livable densities.
The majority of homes in the city were built in the 1950s and 1960s, found in mature neighborhoods with lush landscaping. There are also a good number of homes representing various time periods.
Around 10% of the city’s housing stock was built in the last 25 years, including several new communities of single-family homes, townhomes, and condos. As such, you’ll find a wide range of architectural styles in the city, from mid-20th century traditional bungalows to contemporary.
Living in Gardena
Gardena is highly walkable, with many restaurants, shops, and bars found near residential areas. Residents enjoy six city parks, a community pool, and community gyms. The city offers various sports programs throughout the year, including gymnastics, tennis, golf, Tai Chi, and others.
Gardena has a significant Japanese-American population dating back to its early history, so it’s not surprising to find a number of Japanese-inspired establishments in the city. These include Tokyo Central and Main, a supermarket and novelty shop featuring imports from Japan; and the Nakaoka Community Center, which stages events showcasing Japanese culture.
Gardena also has a large Latino population, so you’ll find some of the best Mexican food in South Bay right here. The city’s restaurant scene features a wide variety of cuisines, as well, and a number of new breweries provide exciting nightlife options.
Nature lovers relish the 13.6-acre Gardena Willows and Wetland Preserve, one of the last remaining wetlands in Los Angeles.
Gardena students attend the Los Angeles Unified School District, which includes several highly-rated elementary and high schools.
Looking for a home in Gardena? Get in touch with 3 Leaf Realty
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