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Living in Shockoe Bottom Guide 🏬 | What it’s Like Living in the Shockoe Bottom Neighborhood

Last Updated on: 16th November 2023, 09:06 am

Are you thinking about moving to Shockoe Bottom, Richmond, VA? This riverside neighborhood near downtown is one of the oldest communities in Richmond. Shockoe Bottom is a vibrant area featuring cobblestone streets, upscale fashion stores, local cafes, breweries, live music, art studios, and excellent restaurants. The name Shockoe Bottom pays homage to the Powhatan/Algonquian phrase “Shacahocan,” meaning “a flat rock at the mouth of the creek.” When living in Shockoe Bottom, you can rest easy knowing you’re in one of the best neighborhoods in Richmond, VA.

Where Is Shockoe Bottom, Richmond?

Shockoe Bottom is located just one mile southeast of downtown, along the James River. The commute time is only four minutes! Shockoe Bottom is conveniently situated next to Interstate 95 as well. The neighborhood is bordered by Shockoe Slip to the west, Church Hill to the east, Union Hill to the northeast, and Rocket’s Landing to the south. The neighborhood has an area of 129 acres, and the zip code is 23223. 

The Greater Richmond Transit Company (GRTC) Shockoe Bottom Station allows residents easy access to the bus system for travel throughout the Greater Richmond Metro area. Buses arrive every 30 minutes. The GRTC Rapid Bus Route (called Pulse) is a modern, high-capacity, rapid transit system that serves a 7.6-mile route along Broad Street and Main Street from Rockets Landing to Willow Lawn in Henrico County. Buses stop every 15 minutes at the Shockoe Bottom Station.

Those moving to Shockoe Bottom can easily access Amtrak, which has a hub in downtown Richmond.

Map of Shockoe Bottom, Richmond

Shockoe Bottom History & Overview

Shockoe Bottom was first cited in the 1730 Tobacco Inspection Act and was part of the tobacco industry in the late 18th century. Shockoe Bottom was also a major port for ships sailing up the James River to Richmond. The community was the second-largest domestic slave trade site between the late 17th century and the end of the Civil War in 1865. Today, many of the historic buildings in Shockoe Bottom have been converted into restaurants, shops, offices, and apartments.

Shockoe Bottom has a population of 2,360 and a household income of $43,400, a little higher than the Richmond average of $41,200. 93.8% of the population have earned a high school diploma, and 70.2 % have obtained a bachelor’s degree. Richmond is a young city; the average age is 34.1, and Shockoe Bottom is even younger, with a median age is 31.3. The foreign-born population in Shockoe Bottom is 2.1%. The racial and ethnic composition of Shockoe Bottom is 80.0% White, 10.1% Black or African American, 4.4% Asian, 2.5% Hispanic, and 1.8% two or more races.

What’s it Like Living in Shockoe Bottom?


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Shockoe Bottom is an eclectic neighborhood with countless restaurants and unique specialty shops. All are close by and walkable. Take a stroll along the Canal Walk with beautiful views of the James River. At night, the community really comes alive with a variety of bars, breweries, and clubs, offering fun, DJs, and live local bands. Enjoy waterfront dining at one of the restaurants overlooking the river. Many college students from Virginia Commonwealth University, which is only 5 miles away, enjoy the nightlife in Shockoe Bottom. The 17th Street Farmer’s Market features local produce, eggs, meats, cheeses, baked goods, and more. You can also pick up crafts made by local artisans.

With many high-end lofts, studios, historic townhomes, condos, and upscale apartments, Shockoe Bottom is a great location for young professionals. Downtown Richmond is minutes away for those who work there. Being a young neighborhood with plenty of exciting nightlife, Shockoe Bottom is the perfect place to be for the best urban living in Richmond.

Things to Do in Shockoe Bottom – Best Restaurants, Attractions & Shopping


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With so many Shockoe Bottom restaurants, there is something for every palate. If you’re looking for a high-end place to eat, you can find it there. Maybe you’re in the mood for a charming bistro or an old-fashioned mom-and-pop eatery. Shockoe Bottom has larger chains as well.

For the best seafood around and the finest quality steaks, check out Bookbinder’s. This award-winning restaurant offers an evening you won’t forget. Oak & Apple serves up mouth-watering BBQ and local ciders. With a 5-star rating, Oak & Apple is the place to satisfy your taste for southern cooking. Bottoms Up Pizza is a family-friendly pizzeria where you’ll find a variety of signature, one-of-a-kind pizzas to choose from. Try the Rockafeller, topped with smoked oysters, bacon, spinach, and shredded parmesan, or the Goat in the Garden, with fresh spinach, Roma tomatoes, goat cheese, and roasted garlic.

You won’t have any trouble finding things to do in Shockoe Bottom. This historic, culturally rich neighborhood offers plenty of things to see and do. Explore the Poe Museum to get a fascinating peek into the life of the famous writer. Poe was born in Richmond and started his career in journalism there. The museum offers interactive programs, tours, and lectures for children and adults. The Richmond Slave Trail offers a glimpse into the history of the slave trade in Richmond. The trail starts at Manchester Docks, where slaves were shipped from 1830 to 1860. Continue through the slave markets of Richmond, Lumpkin’s Slave Jail, and the Negro Burial Ground, ending at First African Baptist Church, where pre-Civil War African Americans congregated before the Civil War. The Virginia Holocaust Museum offers a sobering reminder of the Holocaust, featuring documents, exhibits, and archival collections. They provide educational programs as well, inspiring future generations of Virginians to stand up against prejudice and indifference.

Check out our guide to the 8 Best Museums in Richmond, VA.

Shockoe Bottom is lined with boutiques and unique local shops. Stony Point Fashion Park offers a unique, park-like atmosphere with beautiful fountains and local architecture in an inviting shopping environment. Some of the major retailers in the park are Tiffany & Co., Anthropologie, P.F. Chang’s, Vineyard Vines, and Restoration Hardware.

Here’s where to find the top restaurants, attractions, and shops in Shockoe Bottom:

The City of Richmond Parks and Recreation maintains over 170 parks with a wide range of amenities. Shockoe Bottom residents can enjoy baseball fields, basketball courts, BMX bike trails, playgrounds, softball fields, swimming pools, tennis courts, walking, nature, bike, and exercise trails, and more.

For more information, take a look at our guide to Parks in Richmond!

Schools in Shockoe Bottom

Richmond City Public Schools serves those living in Shockoe Bottom Richmond. and has 25 elementary schools, 7 middle schools, and 7 high schools. Bellevue Elementary, Chimborazo Elementary, Martin Luther King Jr Middle, and Open High are the nearest schools to Shockoe Bottom. Open High is the #1 ranked school in Richmond by U.S.News. Nearby private schools include Central Montessori, St. Andrews School, and church Hill Academy.

Take a look over our guide to the Best Private Schools in Richmond VA.

The Richmond Public Library offers students and others free resources, books, laptops they can check out, and more.

Is Shockoe Bottom Safe?

The crime rate in Shockoe Bottom is 215% higher than the national average. The violent crime rate is 44% higher. As with any neighborhood or city, most crime is contained in certain areas that you should avoid. The City of Richmond Police Department serves and protects the Shockoe Bottom neighborhood with about 750 sworn officers. Check out their weekly crime stats here.

Shockoe Bottom, Richmond Real Estate

In Shockoe Bottom, you’ll find elegant brownstones and many old warehouses that have been converted into upscale apartments with high-end amenities.  The median sale price of a home in Shockoe Bottom, Richmond is $230,000, which is down 22.8% from last year. By comparison, the median price for a home in Richmond is $325,600. The median sale price of a home per square foot in Shockoe Bottom is $215, 29.7% lower than last year. Check out homes for sale in Shockoe Bottom, Richmond, to see how much a home in the neighborhood will cost you.

Shockoe Bottom is one of the most popular neighborhoods in Richmond. Renter-occupied households make up 89% of the neighborhood. Rental prices average $1,276 for a 1-bedroom apartment, compared to $1,440 in the city of Richmond, according to RentCafé.


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If you are moving to Shockoe Bottom, Richmond, let the professional movers at On The Fly Moving take the worry and stress away and make your move smooth and easy. We are the best Richmond movers in Shockoe Bottom and will take care of your belongings as if they were ours. Give us a call today at 804-836-4954 for your free, personalized moving estimate!


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