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Overview

Introduction to Gainesville, Florida

The Florida city of Gainesville is the county seat of Alachua County, and also the county's largest city. It is situated 37 miles north of Ocala, 71 miles southwest of Jacksonville and 114 miles northwest of Orlando. The city is served by an extensive road system, including Interstate 75, US Route 301, US Route 441 and Florida State Highways 20, 24 and 26. Gainesville is noteworthy for being the home of the University of Florida, Florida's principal state university and the fourth-largest university in the nation. Gainesville is also home to Santa Fe Community College, one of the largest community colleges in the U.S.

Incorporated in 1869, Gainesville was named in honor of General Edmund Pendleton Gaines, a noted commander in the Second Seminole War. During the latter part of the 19th century, the city and its county prospered, riding the success of the citrus and phosphate industries. The city's advantageous central location also made it a prime target of the burgeoning railroad industry. Although the early part of the 20th century brought the boll weevil and its devastating effect on cotton crops, the new century also brought construction of the University of Florida (1906), giving Gainesville a staple that would later prove vital in helping the city's economy weather the depression era. The university has also been a key factor in the continued prosperity of Gainesville during the latter half of the 20th century. Today, Gainesville boasts world class medical facilities, historic districts, new or newly-restored city buildings and numerous cultural venues.

Arts and Culture in Gainesville

Considered Gainesville's cultural hub, the Thomas Center is the site of a variety of art exhibits and musical programs. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Center contains art galleries, local history exhibits, performance space and meeting rooms, as well as the surrounding Thomas Center Gardens and the adjacent Grace and Sidney Knight Children's Theatre. Other cultural facilities in Gainesville include the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Hippodrome State Theatre, the Harn Museum of Art, the Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, the Olustee Battlefield State Historic Site, the Civic Media Center, the Acrosstown Repertory Theatre and the Gainesville Community Playhouse.

Gainesville has undertaken a large historic preservation initiative over the past several decades, resulting in a number of buildings which have been added to the National Register of Historic Places. Some of the structures in and around the downtown area include:

  • Matheson Center Home (1867).
  • Masonic Temple (1913).
  • Bailey Plantation House (1854).
  • Baird Hardware Company Warehouse (1910).
  • Thomas Hotel (1928).
  • Seagle Building (1937).
  • Cox Furniture Store (1887).
  • Star Garage (1903).

A two-hour drive provides access to a number of hugely popular Central Florida attractions, including the Kennedy Space Center (located on Merritt Island) and the Orlando tourist destinations of Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and Sea World.

Sports in Gainesville and Alachua County center on the University of Florida Gators, a perennial national college football powerhouse. The other prime focal point for area sports fans is the sport of auto racing. Gainesville Raceway, a local drag racing landmark which opened in 1969, has long been recognized as one of the fastest tracks on the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) circuit. The facility is annual host to one of NHRA's largest national events, the "Gatornationals," held every March since 1970.

Within a two-hour drive you can cheer your favorite major league professional sports teams with the NBA's Orlando Magic, the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars and Arena Football's Orlando Predators. Minor League baseball action can be found in Jacksonville, where the Suns, a AAA-affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers, reside. During Spring Training in March, baseball's Atlanta Braves play their games at the Walt Disney World complex in Orlando.

People

Total Population 127,559
Male Share of the Population 47.9%
Female Share of the Population 52.1%
Senior Citizens 8.9%
Employed Population 16+ 56,928
Age of the Population 25

Families

% of people married 24.8%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 43%
Median Earnings25+ $30,620
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $12,638
Median Earnings With High School Degree $23,169

Wealth

Median Family Income $53,784
% Above Poverty Level 64.4%
% Below Poverty Level 35.6%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 17 minutes
% Working from Home 4.1%
% Walking and Biking to Work 10.8%
% Using Public Transportation 8.1%

Housing

People Living Alone 37.5%
Median Gross Rent $841
Median House Value $141,500

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 40.7%
US/American 0.1%
English 8.3%
Irish 10.9%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Gainesville Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 61 miles SW of Jacksonville, Florida
County Alachua
Metro Area Gainesville
Standard Zip Codes 32601, 32603, 32605, 32606, 32607, 32608, 32609, 32612, 32641, 32653
P.O. Box Zip Codes 32602, 32604, 32610, 32611, 32613, 32614, 32627, 32635
Phone Area Codes 352
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 29.651
Longitude -82.325

Gainesville Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Station GAINESVILLE 3 WSW
Distance 2.8 miles
Jan Temp 44 to 67 F
Apr Temp 56 to 80 F
Jul Temp 72 to 91 F
Oct Temp 61 to 82 F
Annual Precip 49.4 inches
Station GAINESVILLE 11 WNW
Distance 10.7 miles
Jan Temp 42 to 67 F
Apr Temp 54 to 81 F
Jul Temp 70 to 92 F
Oct Temp 57 to 83 F
Annual Precip 49.5 inches
Station HIGH SPRINGS
Distance 20.8 miles
Jan Temp 41 to 68 F
Apr Temp 54 to 82 F
Jul Temp 71 to 91 F
Oct Temp 58 to 82 F
Annual Precip 54.1 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Alachua 9,435 $70,972
Archer 1,180 $43,382
Hawthorne 1,670 $35,391
La Crosse 261 $51,389
Micanopy 668 $43,839
Waldo 1,004 $31,944

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Gainesville Public Libraries

Library
Alachua County Library District
401 EAST UNIVERSITY AVENUE
Gainesville, Florida
(352) 334-3910

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Gainesville Hospitals

NORTH FLORIDA REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER
(Proprietary)
6500 NEWBERRY ROAD
(352) 333-4100
Emergency Service: Yes

SHANDS HOSP AT THE UNIVERSITY OF FL
(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
1600 SW ARCHER ROAD
(352) 265-8000
Emergency Service: Yes

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Gainesville High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

F. W. BUCHHOLZ HIGH SCHOOL
5510 NW 27TH AVENUE
352-955-6702
Serves 2,598 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 23.6

GAINESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL
1900 NW 13TH STREET
352-955-6707
Serves 1,939 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 20.8

EASTSIDE HIGH SCHOOL
1201 SE 45TH TERRACE
352-955-6704
Serves 1,815 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 18.2

P.K. YONGE DEVELOPMENTAL RESEARCH SCHOOL
1080 SW 11TH STREET
352-392-1554
Serves 1,175 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 16.5

W. TRAVIS LOFTEN HIGH SCHOOL
3000 E UNIVERSITY AVENUE
352-955-6839
Serves 304 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 9.8

FLORIDA SIATECH AT GAINESVILLE
5301 NE 40TH TERRACE
352-371-4424
A Charter School.
Serves 213 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 106.5

SIDNEY LANIER CENTER
312 NW 16TH AVENUE
352-955-6841
A Special Education School
Serves 160 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 4.8

HORIZON CENTER. ALTERNATIVE SCHOOL
2802 NE EIGHTH AVENUE
352-955-7250
A Non-traditional School
A Title I School.
Serves 110 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 11

A.Q. JONES/EXCEP. STUDENT CENTER
1108 NW 7TH AVENUE
352-955-6840
A Special Education School
Serves 89 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 5.6

N. FLORIDA JUVENILE DETENTION
3436 NE 39TH AVENUE
352-955-7634
Serves 53 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 8.8

HOSPITAL HOMEBOUND
312 NW 16TH AVENUE
352-955-6841
A Special Education School
Serves 40 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 8

PACE
1010 SE 4TH AVENUE
352-955-7634
Serves 36 students.

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