Downtown Architecture

Community Profile

Watsonville is the agricultural center of the Monterey Bay.  The City is recognized for its strawberries, fresh cut flowers and ethnic diversity. The ethnic distribution of Watsonville’s population has changed since being founded by immigrants from Yugoslavia. The Irish were one of the first waves of immigrants drawn to the fertile Pajaro Valley during the 1800′s. Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Italian, Portuguese and Mexican immigrants followed. Today, nearly 75% percent of the population in Watsonville is Latino.  Watsonville ranks as the 21st largest Hispanic market in the United States. Watsonville is also a young town with 34% percent of its population under 18 years of age.  More information regarding Watsonville and its rich history may be found here.

Demographic Overview – Census 2010

Total Population 51,586
Male 25,690
Females 25,896
Population Change
2010 51,586
2005 49,601
2000 44,265
1990 31,099
1980 23,543
White 22,399
Black 358
Hispanic 41,656
American Indian and Alaska Native 629
Asian 1,664
Native Hawaiian 40
Two or more Races 2,265
18 years and younger 23,498
18 and over 35,088
Median Income in 2010(trade area) $67,050
Median Income (City Limits) $46,050
Total Housing Units 11,771
Occupied Housing Units 11,443
Owner-occupied Housing 4,354
Renter-occupied Housing 5,914
Median Housing Cost $389,800

Watsonville Community Highlights

City Facts

  • Median household income (trade area)  in 2009: $67,050
  • Median value of home as of May, 2010: $389,800
  • 6.69 square miles with a current population of 51,686 (January 2007)
  • Pleasant climate year-round with warm temperatures, low humidity and average rainfall of 19 inches per year
  • Business conscious Mayor and City Council
  • Designated California State Enterprise Zone


  • Full-service city water, sewer, refuse, recycling, transportation, parks and recreation, library, public safety
  • Class-1 Fire Department with 2 stations
  • 1 Police Department with 1 station and 3 police community centers ensuring low levels of crime
  • Health care: Watsonville Community Hospital, Mar Monte Clinic and Santa Cruz (Palo Alto) Medical Clinic
  • Quality, mixed-use housing developments and senior housing
  • Retail districts: Historic Downtown Watsonville, Watsonville Square, Overlook Shopping Center, Freedom Shopping Center, East Lake Village Center and Crossroads Shopping Center

Recreation, Cultural and Library Opportunities

  • 24 parks and recreational facilities, including 32-acre Ramsay Park, Pinto Lake Park, 800 acres of Wetlands of Watsonville, golf courses, indoor soccer arena, gym, tennis courts and cultural facilities
  • Cultural and recreational activities, including community art, dance and exercise classes, Independence Day Parade, annual Mother’s Day 10k run; Watsonville Strawberry Festival on Monterey Bay, Monterey Bay Birding Festival and the weekly Watsonville Certified Farmer’s Market
  • Main Watsonville Library, Freedom Branch, Opportunity to Read Literacy Program
  • Access to several beaches within a 10 mile drive
  • Watsonville Fly-in and Airshow


  • The City of Watsonville is 95 miles South of San Francisco International Airport and 50 miles South of Mineta San Jose International Airport
  • Transportation Network:  Watsonville Transit Center, Senior Network Services, Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District, easy access to Interstate 101, Pacific Coast Highway 1, and both Highways 152 and 129
  • Service by Union Pacific Railroad
  • 290-acre Watsonville Municipal Airport

Diverse Work Force

  • 48% high school graduates – Competitive Wage Workforce
  • Job training and placement services through the county’s Workforce Investment Board (WIB)
  • Partner with Cabrillo Community College Small Business Training Center


  • Pajaro Valley Unified School District consists of 34 schools of which some have received California Distinguished School and Blue Ribbon awards.
  • 20 Universities and colleges within a 50 mile drive including UCSC (University of California-Santa Cruz), CSUMB (California State University-Monterey Bay) and SJSU (San Jose State University)