Glendale is a neighborhood in the west-central portion of the New York City borough of Queens. It is bounded by Forest Hills and Kew Gardens to the east, Ridgewood to the west, Woodhaven to the south, and Middle Village to the north. Glendale, a part of Queens Community Board 5 is a working to middle class neighborhood The neighborhood is somewhat suburban in feel, as it is relatively isolated from the New York City Subway and Long Island Rail Road systems. Its tree-lined streets contain housing in several architectural styles.
Glendale residents have a strong sense of unity. This is definitely more of a town for homeowners than it is a town for renters. Residents tend to stay for the long haul, and contribute to keeping the neighborhood clean by maintaining their homes and streets. The civilian patrol helps to keep the town’s crime rate low and residents have a no-tolerance policy for graffiti. There is a homeless shelter that is run by volunteer residents. This is a highly family-oriented town. Most of the housing consists of single or multi-family private homes. The school district is pretty good, and there is a fair selection of private and parochial schools with competitive tuition rates.
There are parks, playgrounds, and a great public library. There is public transportation, but most of the residents own cars. There are plenty of stores for shopping and lots of restaurants for dining out. In short, Glendale is not for everyone. It is not a place for singles or young people looking for a bustling night life. However, it is a great place for families with children and retirees.
Glendale was originally built on a swampy area called Fresh Ponds. The neighborhood was later developed into an industrial area, though today it is a more residential neighborhood. Glendale’s land area is long on its east-west axis and narrow on its north-south axis. The area is surrounded mainly by cemeteries, although the neighborhood also contains several large parks, including part of Forest Park. The land comprising present-day Glendale was originally named Fresh Ponds, as it was a swampy area with fresh water pools.
The easternmost portion near the Shops at Atlas Park is known as Upper Glendale and in general has more expensive homes and slightly higher income levels than the rest of Glendale. Upper Glendale has detached single-family houses of above-average size, semi-detached wood frame houses and a number of brick townhomes with often meticulously maintained grassy front yards. Many of these were built after the 1920s.
The middle portion of Glendale that straddles Myrtle Avenue is the primary business district and has a mix of semi-detached, wood frame, single-family houses as well as a number of multi-family dwellings and townhomes.
The western or “lower” part of Glendale has three national historic districts and includes the neighborhoods of Evergreen (near and around Evergreen Park) and Liberty Park, which is bordered by Cypress Hills Street, Cooper Avenue, 61st Street and cemeteries to the south.
On Sunday mornings you’ll hear church bells in the distance. In spring and fall there are numerous rummage sales, pancake breakfasts and supermarket sweeps fund raisers.
People are friendly – much like a small town and old-timey block parties in the summer are common. Glendale also has its own Memorial Day Parade and secular Holiday tree (eat your heart out 30 Rock!). Decorating for the holidays, or should I say ANY holiday, is big here – Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, Flag Day, Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving and, of course, Christmas.