Clairemont is a residential community of some 96,154 people (2013 estimate) covering an area of 15.6 square miles. Also known as Clairemont Mesa, the community is bordered by Route 52 in the north, Interstate 805 in the east, Interstate 5 in the west and Linda Vista in the South.
The lands making up Clairemont have been inhabited by native Indians long before the first European settlers arrived in North America. The first farms and ranches were established in the area in the 1870’s, with small-scale residential developments following. It wasn’t until the 1950s when Clairemont exploded in population as part of the post-war housing boom. Clairemont was, at the time, the largest post-war residential development in the country.
Clairemont is defined by its unique geography, which consists of canyons, mesas and streams. City planning in Clairemont is guided by its unusual topography, with most of the residential and commercial developments taking place on the gently rolling mesas in between the canyons (hence, the name Clairemont Mesa). Two of the most prominent canyons in Clairemont are the San Clemente Canyon in the east-west and Tecolote Canyon in the north-south, both of which are now public parks.
Clairemont falls under the San Diego Unified School District and the community is home to twelve elementary schools, two middle schools, two high schools, five special-education schools and a community college. The community has two zip codes: 92111 and 92117. Clairemont is comprised of 5 distinct neighborhoods: Clairemont Mesa East, Clairemont Mesa West, North Clairemont, Bay Park and Bay Ho.
The main commercial and business areas in Clairemont are clustered around major transportation corridors such as Clairemont Drive and Clairemont Mesa Boulevard, Balboa Avenue and Genesee Avenue. Smaller commercial developments can be found along Morena Boulevard or interspersed throughout the community.
Mass transit in Clairemont is currently limited to local and express bus lines but there are plans by San Diego’s Metropolitan Transit Development Board to greatly expand services in the area to relieve traffic-congestion along the mid-coast corridor.
Places of Interest in Clairemont Mesa
- Tecolote Canyon Natural Park – covering an area of around 903 acres and running six miles across Clairemont, the Tecolote Canyon is one of the area’s most prominent geological features. It was officially designated as a park in 1977.
- Marian Bear Memorial Park – San Clemente Canyon covers some 467 acres and runs parallel with Freeway 52 along the north end of Clairemont. It was designated as a public park in 1960 and renamed to Marian Bear Memorial Park.
- Tecolote Golf Course – located entirely in Tecolote Canyon, this 18 hole 3,161-yard golf course features a natural creek-bed running through it.
- Krause Family Skate/Bike Park – This public skate park has facilities for skateboarding, in-line skating, scooters and bikes. Operated by the Mission Valley YMCA.