top of page

Downtown Willow Glen 

The tree lined streets of downtown Willow Glen offer a small-town feel nestled in the city of San Jose - the 10th largest city in the nation. Stroll downtown Willow Glen and find sidewalk cafes, coffee shops, boutiques, vintage shops, strollers parked outside unique kid stores, and doggie water bowls everywhere.

Grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner, deposit a check, book a trip, rent a costume, get your eyes or teeth checked, drop off your clothes for cleaning, or pick up your prescription. All this and more with free, convenient parking on the street and in the public parking lots, including a large number of public parking spaces located in the Bank of America lot. Downtown Willow Glen offers more than 250 retail, dining, service and professional businesses waiting to give you that personal service that only a small business owner can provide. Annual street festivals showcase our area to the greater San Jose and Bay Area to thousands of attendees.

Visit us and discover San Jose's best kept secret!

Willow Glen

The History of the Willow Glen Neighborhood

Willow Glen began as a marshy area with numerous Willow trees surrounding the Los Gatos Creek and Guadalupe River. It was drained in the early 1900's and planted with orchards. Later, houses and roads were built in the farmland and Willow Glen began to urbanize, with Lincoln Avenue developing as its downtown shopping area. In the 1920's a railroad was proposed to run through the middle of the community. Area residents joined together to successfully prevent the railroad from dividing their community.

In 1927 the area was incorporated as the town of Willow Glen. By the 1930's the growth of the community made it necessary to join the City of San Jose and in 1936, the town of Willow Glen ceased to be as it became a part of the City of San Jose.

During the 1960's, Willow Glen was once again faced with an attempt to divide its community with the proposal of an expressway that would run through the center of their neighborhood. Once again, the community joined together to stop this incursion.

Today, downtown is a bustling shopping district filled with shoppers, strollers and dogs walking up and down the sweeping tree-lined sidewalks.


Willow Glen Improvement club float in Fiesta de las Rosas parade. 1929


Willow Glen church- 1920 - 1930 1154 Lincoln Ave


Willow Glen School


Willow Glen Electric Street Car w/Engineers - 1920-1930

Have a few historic photos to share? Contact us, we would love to add more to our collection.

bottom of page