The University Park Neighborhood Association, Inc. (UPNA) was formed in 1980 as a voluntary, 501(3)(c) nonprofit organization, with the purpose and mission to preserve, protect, and enjoy our single family neighborhood.
Located just north of the University of Florida (UF) campus, the residents of our neighborhood enjoy ready access to employment, educational opportunities, recreation, regional medical facilities, and shopping. In addition to the University of Florida and Santa Fe (downtown), the new Innovation Hub will provide employment opportunities for those with technical skills in the medical and high tech professions. For those families with young children, the (soon to be renamed) Elementary School on NW 5th Avenue has been a highly ranked neighborhood school with a diverse student population throughout its 75-plus year history. A quiet reason for its success is the English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Program, which attracts families from around the world. Our neighborhood is within easy walking and biking distance to work, libraries, museums, concerts, sporting events, restaurants, and places of worship. Since our neighborhood is one of the oldest in the city, our yards and streets enjoy an enviable tree canopy that helps keep us cool during the summer months.
The residents of our neighborhood represent a diverse and interesting group. In addition to professors, graduate students, and those connected with UF, our neighborhood is populated with commissioners, mayors, retirees, and owners of local businesses. In an effort to connect this diverse group of people, UPNA sponsors a variety of annual events and activities. The most social is our annual spring Picnic/BBQ. This event is one that all members of the family can enjoy. Entertainment includes BBQ cooked by our own master chef, a magician, treasure hunts, and hula hoop instruction. In October we hold our annual potluck and business meeting, where new officers are elected, city commissioners are introduced, and city staff are on hand to discuss the safety and livability of our neighborhood. UPNA also often sponsors Candidate Forums for those running for local office. These well attended forums have a reputation for generating a frank but fair discussion of the issues that impact our neighborhood and city.
In addition to their neighborhood responsibilities organizing neighborhood events, our UPNA board members are also active in civic affairs serving on city advisory boards (e.g. codes, city beautification, and community redevelopment), speaking on neighborhood issues at city commission meetings, and meeting with city officials.
The bottom line is that the University Park Neighborhood is a uniquely dynamic place to live, work, and play. We would love you to join us in our effort to make it even better.
More detailed information about the profile of our neighborhood can be viewed here.