The Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego-Center is a major reason that tourists flock to San Diego. The 16.5 block neighborhood is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and contains 94 structures that are historically and architecturally significant. The district now houses over 70 restaurants and nightclubs as well as movie theaters, shops, offices, galleries, apartments and lofts. There are over 350 businesses in the Quarter.
The area has had many names over the years--Rabbitville, Flea Town, New Town San Diego, Davis Folly, Stingaree, Chinatown and SOB (South of Broadway). Alonzo Horton built a wharf at the foot of Fifth Avenue and promoted the area as the business district for his new town. The district's fortunes rose and fell according to San Diego's prosperity. It's reputation as an unsavory, lawless red-light was well-earned during several periods of its history. Ultimately though the area just slid into disrepair and decay.