While I currently live in West Asheville, I have lived in three different areas of North Asheville since 1996. I love the North Side as it is mature, established, and artsy without being stuffy or pretentious. It is close to downtown, but it has a personality all its own. Because of its stability, proximity to downtown, and its historic character, North Asheville has always been and remains an expensive residential area.
North Asheville is technically any neighborhood north of I 240, but I tend to think of the area just north of I240 as "central" North Asheville as it is really more closely aligned with downtown and Montford than with North Asheville.
North Asheville is one of the older parts of town with neighborhoods built during the boom of the early 1900s with in-fill from later periods up until the 1970s. Neighborhoods include Grove Park, Norwood Park, Lakeview Park, Grace, Beaverdam and others. Homes range from very modest bungalows to stately to some more modern homes on tops of hills with amazing views. Prices begin in the mid-200s (good luck) and run upwards past the million mark.
Merrimon Ave. (Hwy 25) is the principal artery through North Asheville, and it is lined with businesses, grocery stores, and restaurants. While Merrimon is a business corridor, the other primary route to and through North Asheville is Kimberly Avenue which borders the Grove Park Inn Golf Course and is lined with stately homes.
Most of North Asheville lies within a mile to 4 miles from downtown, so it is very much connected to the heart of Asheville. UNCA (University of North Carolina Asheville) is also located in North Asheville, adding a cultural hub and college element to this mature part of town.
Recently, the Asheville Citizen-Times profiled North Asheville, so check out these links to their articles and photos:
At Home and Play in North Asheville by Jason Sanford
North Asheville Offers Variety of Galleries and Artworks by Carol Motsinger
North Asheville Abounds in Recreational Options by Jessica Kennedy
Charlotte Street is a Cozy Microcosm of Living, Work by Mat Payne