contentsNovato CA Chamberads

About Novato

Novato is an economically diverse and vibrant North Bay city of 53,000 residents, and one rightfully proud of its heritage, amenities and resilient economy. Highway 101 connects this northernmost Marin County city to San Francisco to the south and Sonoma and Napa counties to the north. Because it serves as a natural hub, global corporations, cutting-edge startups and niche independent businesses consider Novato’s economic strengths and location as ideal for their home base.

In turn, families and individuals are drawn by the city’s bucolic landscape and friendly neighborhoods. The Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART), carrying riders starting in 2016, will enhance commuter green options and a greater regional labor pool, mid-decade onward.

Covering an area of 28 square miles, Novato is 20 miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge, 27 miles from downtown San Francisco and 15 miles south of “Wine Country.” The mean annual temperature is 67 degrees, with lows averaging 46 degrees and highs averaging 71 degrees. Rainfall totals about 27.5 inches per year.

Novato residents take great pride and interest in all their city has to offer. A low population density and expansive open space help create today – and ensure for future generations – Novato’s rural, small-town atmosphere.

Quality-of-life standards have consistently been a top priority and focus with Novato’s community leaders in education, business, government and volunteer organizations. Local businesses draw from a highly-educated workforce, rapidly-growing recognized bio-science and pharmaceutical development, professional service industries and expanding international markets.

Major community events throughout the year include June’s Novato Festival of Art, Wine & Music, the annual 4th of July Parade, both held in downtown Novato, and attracting folks region-wide.

• Novato’s History Novato’s history dates to 1300 AD when Miwok Native Americans lived in a village at the base of Mount Burdell. Legend has it that the Spanish taught the Miwok how to build with adobe and to cultivate food crops for trade with Spanish missions.

Mexican governors made land grants in the Novato area. In 1839, Fernando Feliz was granted Rancho de Novato. The following year Ignacio Pacheco received Rancho San Jose.

After being sold several times, Rancho Novato was purchased in 1856 by Francis DeLong and Joseph Sweetser. Subdivision of 6,000 acres by DeLong was the beginning of present day Novato.

Historical Downtown Novato The beginnings of downtown date back to 1888 when the Home and Land Co. (then corporate owners of Rancho Novato) auctioned off more than 200 lots in the area of East Grant Avenue and Olive Avenue. By 1910, Main Street boasted four hostelries and a large number of bars. The town was officially incorporated in 1960.

Novato now has a growing number of innovative businesses. Its city government is distinguished in Marin for its responsiveness to the democratic process. City Council and Planning Commission meetings are well attended, publicly televised and now available for viewing online at the city’s website:

• Novato Demographics Population — 52,750 Metro (San Francisco Bay Area) — 7 million Sales Tax (State/Local) — 9.0% Median Age — 40 years Median Household Income — $63,453

previous topic
next topic
Town Square Publications