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Information about San Francisco
San Francisco is known for more than its sourdough bread and beautiful bridges. This peninsular city of nearly 853,000 (based on 2014 U.S. Census Bureau estimates) on the coast of Northern California is also home to vibrant businesses, notable institutions of higher education and an iconoclastic, even rebellious, culture. A major world city, San Francisco offers residents and tourists countless amenities and attractions, including the the legendary music venue the Fillmore, Davies Symphony Hall and dozens of culturally vibrant neighborhoods from Russian Hill, the Western Addition and the Castro to Chinatown, Haight-Ashbury and Bayview.
Beyond the city limits, the Redwood Forest National and State Parks are a day trip from San Francisco to the north, while other offerings such as Marin Headlands Park, Stinson Beach and Napa Valley's wine country are only an hour or two away by car. Other Bay Area cities, such as Berkeley, San Jose and Oakland, offer outstanding cultural institutions and neighborhoods of their own.
Higher Education in San Francisco
San Francisco State University, part of the California State University System, is the major 4-year institution offering baccalaureate and master's degrees in the city. Other nonprofit 4-year schools include the University of San Francisco, Golden Gate University, the San Francisco Art Institute and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Students interested in a certificate or 2-year degree can attend the City College of San Francisco, which enrolled nearly 24,000 students as of Fall 2014.
San Francisco Economy
San Francisco's dynamic economy provides the city's inhabitants with their high standard of living and is geared primarily toward tourism, financial services and information technology. The city benefited greatly from the dot-com boom of the late 1990s. Since then, however, the economy has stabilized significantly, and San Francisco is now hoping to become a center for biotechnology and biomedical research. Gentrification has been a hot-button issue in the city recently, as property values have doubled and even tripled while incomes have failed to rise as quickly.