A home on the LSU and City Park lakes. Photos by Collin Richie
With thousands of new jobs in Baton Rouge, real estate is hot in the Capital Region, says realtor Jerry del Rio of Jerry del Rio Real Estate. Transfer residents are moving in and many locals, especially new homeowners and growing families, are waiting patiently for the perfect property to emerge in the neighborhood of their choice. Del Rio says that every client is different, but Baton Rouge is diverse enough to satisfy a range of tastes and preferences.
“There’s definitely something for everybody,” she says. “Every neighborhood has its own thing.”
Here are some of Baton Rouge’s most notable neighborhoods and what makes them winning places to nest.
With luxury homes, secluded streets and large lots, Bocage has long been considered one of Baton Rouge’s most appealing addresses. Sandwiched between Jefferson Highway and Corporate Boulevard, the area is situated in a sea of retail, but still feels quiet and private. There are numerous conveniences within a stone’s throw of Bocage, from supermarkets to high-end clothing stores to salons.
• Many homes include high ceilings, luxury features, large lots and mature landscaping.
• Some houses were designed by A. Hays Town and by other sought-after architects.
• Towne Center is minutes from Bocage and features Whole Foods Market, salons and spas, restaurants, clothing boutiques and gift shops.
• Neighboring streets Jefferson Highway, Old Hammond Highway and Corporate Boulevard offer some of the most dense retail in the parish. Everything from school uniforms to designer shoes to take-out healthy meals can be found nearby.
• Restaurants range from national chains such as P.F. Chang’s and Bonefish Grill to the local City Pork Brasserie and Bar.
• Tennis enthusiasts in the neighborhood can join Bocage Racquet Club, a family-friendly swimming and tennis club.
• Interstates 10 and 12 are located within a five-minute drive.
This mature neighborhood offers roomy lots, large homes, sidewalks, shade trees and long-term residents and young families. The 2,000-home neighborhood was established in the ’50s. It’s bordered by Florida Boulevard, Airline Highway, Old Hammond Highway and Sharp Road. The Broadmoor Residents Association is an active group that ensures property values in the area remain high.
• The Broadmoor Residents Association maintains an e-blast distribution list to quickly inform neighbors about events and news.
• While quiet and secluded, the neighborhood is bordered by bustling retail districts and major thoroughfares.
• Numerous restaurants, houses of worship, grocery stores, home goods stores and pharmacies are located nearby.
• There is a dedicated pedestrian/bike loop that is approximately 1.54 miles long and provides a safer experience for cyclists and walkers.
Downtown’s historic neighborhoods, Spanish Town and Beauregard Town, are the oldest in the Capital Region and feature stunning historic houses and streetscapes. Spanish Town is within walking distance of the State Capitol Complex. Beauregard Town is situated on the north and south sides of Government Street and includes European-style diagonal streets. Downtown is also home to new housing, including loft apartments. By the middle of 2016, about 400 new housing units will be open to buyers and renters.
• Downtown is home to the majority of Baton Rouge’s parades, 5Ks and marathons, concerts and holiday events. Living in downtown means you can walk toenjoy these gatherings.
• There are dozens of restaurants, cafés and bars in downtown, including a growing number of fine dining and eclectic eateries. The Red Stick Farmers Market is held downtown every Saturday.
• When Matherne’s Market opened in early 2015, downtown saw its first full-service supermarket in 50 years. The grocery store has surpassed sales expectations and stocks wine, cheese, prepared meals and sushi, fresh produce, meats, fish and more.
• More than 55,000 men and women work in downtown Baton Rouge every day.
• The area is home to Baton Rouge’s oldest churches.
• The riverfront includes the Louisiana Art & Science Museum, the River Center, the Old State Capitol, the Shaw Center for the Arts, two casinos and the USS Kidd.
• Property values in downtown are high and will continue to increase. A small number of luxury townhomes with high-end features are being built on the riverfront near the new IBM building.
Named a Top 10 “Great Neighborhood” by the American Planning Association, Baton Rouge’s Garden District is known for its historic architecture, front porch culture and active civic association. The neighborhood was established between 1910 and 1930 and includes three designated historic districts: Kleinert Terrace, Roseland Terrace and Drehr Place. Some individual homes are also listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
• Many of the Garden District’s earliest residences were built in the style of Queen Anne Colonial Revival, with small fluted columns, curved galleries and elaborate rooflines.
• The Garden District Civic Association hosts numerous annual events, including an Easter egg hunt and block parties.
• With sidewalks and mature live oaks throughout, neighbors enjoy walking dogs, jogging and riding bikes.
• The nine-hole City Park Golf Course, Baton Rouge Gallery, City-Brooks Park, a Raising Cane’s Dog Park and the City Park Tennis Center are all located within walking distance.
• There is a wide range of housing, from bungalows and cottages to million-dollar mansions with unique architectural features.
• At least two “little free libraries” exist in the neighborhood, which allow neighbors to exchange books.
• The Garden District Trolley, operated by the Capital Area Transportation System (CATS), takes residents between downtown and Southdowns, with stops in the Garden District.
• Within biking distance are the eclectic shops and restaurants in the Perkins Road Overpass District. The less-than-one-mile corridor includes a couple dozen eateries and bars.
• The Wearin’ of the Green parade, which turned 30 in 2015, rolls through the Garden District along Terrace Avenue and Perkins Road on St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
HUNDRED OAKS, STEELE PLACE & WEBB PARK
These three neighborhoods, which roughly follow Broussard Street and Hundred Oaks Avenue, share similar traits, including lots of native trees, mature foliage, large lots and luxury homes with high ceilings, hardwood floors and custom finishes. Homes were built beginning in the ’40s. The area has also seen new construction on existing lots. A large number of families live in this area and enjoy strolling, biking and jogging along the oak-lined streets.
• Baton Rouge’s famed Wearin’ of the Green parade celebrating St. Patrick’s Day begins in Steele Place and rolls through Hundred Oaks before entering the Garden District.
• Architecture is varied and includes older homes that have been renovated as well as new construction.
• Webb Park, a BREC facility, has seen a major upgrade thanks in part to the work of the Webb Park Neighborhood Association. The park features new playground equipment and a shaded picnic area.
• Webb Park features an 18-hole public golf course.
• The area enjoys quick access to Perkins Road, Government Street, Jefferson Highway and College Drive.
• There are numerous retailers, restaurants, supermarkets and pharmacies in the area.
• Architectural styles include Acadian, midcentury modern, Mediterranean, frame and ranch.
This majestic part of Baton Rouge is anchored by two of the Capital City’s most popular sites: the Louisiana State University campus and the LSU/City Park lakes. There are moss-trimmed live oaks throughout the area, creating a tranquil and shady backdrop for strolling, biking or jogging. The neighborhood has quick access to the interstate, Acadian Village and Perkins Road.
• Neighborhoods include College Town, Stanford Place, Lakeshore, University Hills and University Acres.
• Residents live within walking distance of the LSU campus, with access to sporting events, art exhibits and live theater.
• The Baton Rouge Area Foundation is undertaking a master plan for the LSU/City Park lakes to increase pedestrian and bike paths and add more recreational activities.
• Homes range from moderate to luxury. Lakefront lots are among the most popular residences in the Capital Region.
• College Town has high appraisal rates, and some of the highest per-square-foot value in the city.
• Residents can reach I-10 via Acadian Thruway in minutes.
• There are plenty of restaurants nearby near the north and south gates of LSU, Nicholson Drive and the Perkins Road Overpass District.
• Shopping includes clothing boutiques, a large campus Barnes & Noble as well as the independent Cottonwood Books, pharmacies and grocery stores.
• Diverse architectural styles include cottage, frame, Italian Renaissance, Acadian and Mediterranean.
Mid City neighborhoods Ogden Park, Bernard Terrace and Capital Heights have long attracted residents who appreciate local merchants, charming housing and an eclectic vibe. Two major projects promise to make this area an even more enviable destination. The FutureBR Parish Master Plan calls for sections of Government Street to be converted from four lanes to three to accommodate a center turning lane, pedestrian paths and bike lanes. Second, the former Entergy site east of the interstate is being planned as a mixed-used development with a possible rail station in the future.
• Architecture is dominated by cozy frame houses, many of which have been renovated and updated.
• About six years ago, Capital Heights Avenue was converted to a one-way street to make room for a bike lane. It draws cyclists, dog walkers, kids on bikes and parents with strollers.
• Government Street is home to The Dufrocq School, an East Baton Rouge Parish magnet elementary that offers a Montessori program, a community garden and an interactive micro-society curriculum, as well as Baton Rouge Magnet High School, a nationally respected public high school.
• Mid City’s annual “White Light Nights” includes open houses hosted by a wide variety of merchants featuring local art and food. The merchants host smaller seasonal art hops throughout the year as well.
• Baton Rouge’s five historic cemeteries are located in Mid City.
• The area is home to a large collection of local eateries, including Bistro Byronz, Roman’s, Anthony’s Italian Deli, Tiger Deaux-nuts, Fleur de Lis Pizza, Modern Meals, Yvette Marie’s Café, Jay’s Barb-B-Q and La Carreta. Several new eateries are forthcoming.
• Mid City residents can easily reach downtown, Perkins Road and Jefferson Highway.
• Amenities include fitness clubs, banks, grocery stores, funky gift shops, houses of worship, a hospital, plant nurseries, auto repair shops and one of the city’s famed blues music venues, Phil Brady’s.
Large lots, stately homes, mature oak trees and a range of architectural styles define Old Goodwood, an area between Jefferson and Airline highways. In the last few years, the neighborhood association has worked to make the area more walkable by connecting a pedestrian path to the BREC park situated in the neighborhood.
• The main branch of the East Baton Rouge Parish Library is located in Old Goodwood. The state-of-the-art building was unveiled in 2013.
• Old Goodwood residents have quick access to BREC’s Independence Park facilities, which include tennis, soccer fields, an arboretum and a community theater.
• To dine out, residents can head to Towne Center or Government Street for a variety of local eateries as well as national chains.
• Nearby Jefferson Highway offers pharmacies, veterinary clinics, banks, clothing stores, school uniforms, sports outfitters and more.
• Most residences are sizeable and include modern and high-end features, diverse architecture and high resale value.
Home to the Southdowns Mardi Gras Parade and located between Perkins Road and Stanford Avenue, Southdowns is a favorite neighborhood for residents with ties to LSU, including the main campus or the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. It’s easy to reach the interstate and many destinations from Southdowns, including supermarkets, pharmacies, retailers, restaurants and doctors’ offices. One of the largest Catholic churches in the city, St. Aloysius, is located in the neighborhood on Stuart Avenue.
• In the older part of the neighborhood, houses include many cottages and bungalows. The periphery of Southdowns includes newer, larger homes on expansive lots.
• Rouzan, a traditional neighborhood development underway, borders the neighborhood to the south on Perkins Road. It features higher-end housing and will soon feature eclectic retail, including the state’s first Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. A 200-unit apartment complex is also scheduled for Rouzan.
• Residents of Southdowns can reach Acadian Village in minutes, which includes Trader Joe’s, restaurants, retailers and a bank.
• The LSU/City Park lakes are located within minutes and are a favorite spot for walking, biking and observing migratory birds.
• Southdowns is equidistant from City-Brooks Park on Dalrymple Drive and the Perkins Road “Extreme Sports” Park.