The Tenderloin is the dynamic, rapidly changing neighborhood in San Francisco. It is also as one of the more dense areas in SF. It is a microcosm of San Francisco; cultures from all over the world, new immigrants, the tech industry, the young professionals, the displacement of the older residents, the homeless & drugged out and those who have nowhere to go. It's a gritty area, with very little green space, that wraps around the Civic Center area, to the west, is bound in by Polk Street to the northwest, Nob Hill is almost a physical barrier to the north, while the Tenderloin stops a few blocks short of Union Square to the east and actually crosses into SoMa along Mission Street, from 6th - 9th.
This is a walking person's neighborhood; it's close to everything.
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