Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles

Sherman Oaks is a neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley region of Los Angeles, California, founded in 1927. The neighborhood includes a portion of the Santa Monica Mountains, which gives Sherman Oaks a lower population density than some other areas in Los Angeles.

Sherman Oaks
Sherman Oaks
Location within Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley
Sherman Oaks
Sherman Oaks (the Los Angeles metropolitan area)
Coordinates: 34°09′04″N 118°26′54″W
CountryUnited States
CityLos Angeles
Named forMoses Sherman


A partner of the Los Angeles Suburban Homes Company, Gen. Moses Hazeltine Sherman, developed Sherman Oaks. The company had subdivided 1,000 acres (400 ha) of land that would become Sherman Oaks. In 1927 each acre was sold for $780.[1] Sherman's other major venture was the Los Angeles Pacific Railroad.

In 1991, a group of homeowners living in the Chandler Estates area successfully petitioned former Los Angeles City Councilmember Zev Yaroslavsky to re-draw the boundaries of Sherman Oaks from Magnolia to Burbank Blvd to the north, and from Coldwater Canyon to Van Nuys Blvd to the west, with the goal of including their neighborhood. This request was not anything new to the San Fernando Valley; other neighborhoods had either sought to change their names, or sought to attach themselves onto more affluent neighborhoods to escape from what they saw as growing urban blight and the collapse of their social status.[2] Residents in the area argued, however, that the area was originally part of Sherman Oaks, but was labeled Van Nuys instead through the creation of ZIP codes in 1962; some residents were able to produce a few property deeds to present their case.[3]

Just a few weeks after the Chandler Estates area successfully seceded from Van Nuys, Magnolia Woods, a 45 block area bordered by Van Nuys Boulevard on the east and the San Diego Freeway on the west, and between Burbank and Magnolia Boulevards, also successfully petitioned Los Angeles City council member Marvin Braude to secede from Van Nuys and join Sherman Oaks. Petitioners in the area argued that their neighborhood was also part of Sherman Oaks, though they were only able to produce 22 deeds showing so. As a result of this change, Van Nuys Middle School became separated from its namesake neighborhood.[4]

Finally, in 2009, the Los Angeles City council voted to redraw neighborhood boundaries again to allow an area of about 1,800 homes in Van Nuys to be included. This proposal attracted criticism from locals.[5]

The 1994 Northridge earthquake caused damages in the surrounding area. The Community Redevelopment Agency sought to manage the rebuilding efforts. The homeowners in the Sherman Oaks area later won a lawsuit to prevent the agency from managing efforts.[1]



As of the 2010 census, according to the San Fernando Valley Almanac, Sherman Oaks had a population of 52,677 people and 25,255 households. The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 82% non-Hispanic white, 5% Asian American and 3% African American; 11% were Hispanic or Latino of any race. Other races made up less than 1%.


The Los Angeles Times reported that the 2000 U.S. census counted 61,166 residents in the 9.15-square-mile Sherman Oaks neighborhood, including a wide swath of the Santa Monica Mountains—or 6,687 people per square mile, among the lowest population densities for the city. In 2008, the city estimated that the resident population had increased to 65,436.[7]

In 2000, the percentages of residents aged 19 to 49 and 65 and older were among the county's highest. The percentages of divorced residents and of widows were among the county's highest.[7] The average household size of two people was low when compared to the rest of the city and the county. Renters occupied 58.9% of the housing stock and house- or apartment-owners held 41.1%.[7]

The neighborhood was considered "not especially diverse" ethnically within Los Angeles, with a high percentage of white residents. The breakdown was whites, 73.8%; Latinos, 11.8%; Asians, 5.7%; blacks, 4.4%; and others, 4.4%. Iran (14.1%) and Mexico (8.8%) were the most common places of birth for the 26.2% of the residents who were born abroad—an average percentage for Los Angeles.[7]

The neighborhood had a median household income of $69,651 in 2008, which was high for the city of Los Angeles but about average for the county as a whole. (Median household income reports the amount of money earned by the household that falls exactly in the middle of the pack.) The percentage of households that earned $125,000 and up was high for Los Angeles County.[7]


The neighborhood is roughly bounded by Studio City to the east, Van Nuys to the north, Encino to the west, Bel Air and Beverly Hills Post Office to the south.

Government and infrastructure

Local government

Los Angeles Fire Department operates Station 88 Sherman Oaks and Station 102 South Van Nuys/Valley Glen in Sherman Oaks.[8][9] In addition the department operates Fire Station 78, which serves Sherman Oaks, in Studio City.[10]

The Los Angeles Police Department operates the nearby Van Nuys Community Police Station at 6240 Sylmar Avenue, 91401, serving the community.[11]

County, state, and federal representation

The United States Postal Service Sherman Oaks Post Office is located at 14900 Magnolia Boulevard.[12]


Richard Close, the president of the Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association (SOHA), stated that, as paraphrased by Dinah Eng of the Los Angeles Times, in 1978 Sherman Oaks "played a key role in the drive for Proposition 13" and in 2002 "was the epicenter of the ill-fated San Fernando Valley secession movement".[1]


Forty-five percent of Sherman Oaks residents aged 25 and older had earned a four-year degree by 2000, a high percentage for both the city and the county. The percentage of those residents with a master's degree or higher was also high for the County.[7]

LAUSD schools within the Sherman Oaks boundary include:

  • Van Nuys Middle School. The school was in the Van Nuys community until 1991, when City Council member Marvin Braude directed that a 45-block area that included the school be renamed as part of Sherman Oaks. The school continued to use the name "Van Nuys Middle".[13]
  • Kester Avenue Elementary School
  • Chandler Elementary School
  • Robert A. Millikan Middle School
  • Sherman Oaks Elementary
  • Dixie Canyon Avenue Elementary
  • Riverside Drive Elementary School

Charter schools within the Sherman Oaks boundary include:

Portions of Sherman Oaks, including Magnolia Woods, are zoned to Van Nuys High School in Van Nuys.[14] Other portions are zoned to Grant High School in Valley Glen.[1]

Scott Glover of the Los Angeles Times stated in 1993 "many Sherman Oaks residents do not have school-age children, and many others send their children to private schools".[15]

Private schools include:


Los Angeles Public Library operates the Sherman Oaks Branch.[16] also known as the Sherman Oaks Martin Pollard Branch. The library was renamed in 1970, as a tribute to Martin Pollard, owner of the nearby Casa de Cadillac.[17]

Parks and recreation

The Van Nuys Sherman Oaks Park is in Sherman Oaks. Dinah Eng of the Los Angeles Times wrote in 2002 that the park "is a popular site for family gatherings".[1] The park has an auditorium, two lighted baseball diamonds, six unlighted baseball diamonds, lighted indoor basketball courts, lighted outdoor basketball courts, a children's play area, a 60-person community room, a lighted American football field, an indoor gymnasium without weights, picnic tables, a lighted soccer (football) field, and lighted tennis courts.[18] Located in the same place as the park, the Van Nuys Sherman Oaks Pool is a seasonal outdoor heated swimming pool.[19]

The Van Nuys Sherman Oaks Senior Citizen Center (also known as Bernardi Center), also on the park grounds, has an auditorium and multi-purpose room; its banquet capacity is 200 and its assembly capacity is 300. The senior center also has two community/meeting rooms; one can hold 50 people and one can hold 30 people. The senior center has two kitchens, a play area, a shuffle board place, a stage, and two storage rooms.[20] The Van Nuys Sherman Oaks Tennis Courts facility in the Van Nuys Sherman Oaks Park has eight courts.[21]

In addition the city operates the Sherman Oaks Castle Park, with arcade, batting cages, and miniature golf facilities, in Sherman Oaks.[22]

Notable people


High School Alumni

Notre Dame High School is a private Catholic High School in Sherman Oaks with notable alumni in professional sports and the entertainment industry.

Professional athletes such as baseball players Jack McDowell, Brendan Ryan and Giancarlo Stanton[56], baseball executive Pat Gillick, football players Nick Folk and Kai Forbath and football coach Terry Donahue graduated from this secondary school.

Graduates also include actors Ed Begley Jr.,[57] Rami Malek, Rachel Bilson,[58] Kirsten Dunst,[59] Jerry Mathers,[60] and actress/singer Katharine McPhee.

The TV Series Sherman Oaks appeared on the USA network from 1995 to 1997, which followed plastic surgeon Dr. Sanford Baker and his family, as they're filmed by a young documentary filmmaker. [61] [62]

See also

  • Greater Los Angeles portal


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  2. "Council Urges New Chandler Estates ZIP". Los Angeles Times.
  3. "Neighborhood Presses for Identity It Lost in 1962". Los Angeles Times.
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  5. Reston, Maeve (July 15, 2009). "Part of Van Nuys will get new name". Los Angeles Times.
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