Nestled between Candler Park and Decatur on Atlanta’s leafy east side, Lake Claire has no actual lake. So its tongue-in-cheek motto—“Ski Lake Claire: It’s an Intown Oasis!”—says a lot about the neighborhood’s fun-loving, slightly subversive spirit.
It’s the kind of place where neighbors congregate at the marquee greenspace, Lake Claire Park—where the now-towering playground underwent an impressive renovation last year—to hoist cold ones during Friday happy hours as their kids frolic. Another walkable, public attraction is the Lake Claire Community Land Trust, where visitors can feed Big Lou (a resident emu) and groove to drum circles.
Lake Claire’s housing stock of roughly 1,250 residences is eclectic. It’s not uncommon to find 1940s Tudors, ’50s ranches, new McMansions, and modern houses sharing the same block. This lends each street its own personality and bodes well for interesting walks. Small bungalows start in the $400,000s, and sales north of $900,000 aren’t uncommon. Infill townhome projects along DeKalb Avenue offer cheaper entry prices.
Who lives here?
A large contingent of older hippies, mixed with pram-pushing parents and other professionals who value proximity to Emory University and other job centers.
Bookended by two MARTA train stations, transit is walkable for most. Also within strolling distance is the serene, 40-acre Frazier Forest and a private pool. For years, highly rated Mary Lin Elementary School has been a draw for parents who’ve now made the annual Halloween parade the year’s biggest event. Another tradition is a June barbecue that’s paid homage to Lake Claire’s centennial for three years running.
The secret’s out about Lake Claire, and with a limited housing supply in the area, the neighborhood’s once-prized affordability is plummeting.
“You can simply go to the grocery store, and you’ll see the changes that are taking place within the community. You’ll witness the diversity.”
— Melanie Boyd, a longtime Cascade resident and Coldwell Banker LC Realtor who’s sold homes in the area for nearly 30 years
Crime (Annual odds of becoming a victim in the North Kirkwood neighborhood as defined by NeighborhoodScout.com)
Violent crime: 1 in 867
Property crime: 1 in 38
Georgia School Grade
Henry W. Grady High School: B
Crime ratings by NeighborhoodScout.com are based on data collected from more than 18,000 local law enforcement agencies and coded by location. NeighborhoodScout.com is the most widely used neighborhood search engine in the world. It is owned by Location Inc., a leading builder and source of location-based data and tools for businesses and consumers nationwide. NeighborhoodScout areas are based on Census tracts and don’t always exactly mirror neighborhood boundaries.
School grades were provided by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement. The office’s Georgia School Grades Reports include “A-F letter grades based on school performance and other useful information about the school, such as performance on statewide assessments, the makeup of the school’s student body, the graduation rate, and additional academic information.” schoolgrades.georgia.gov
This article originally appeared in our February 2018 issue.