Normal Heights was named for the San Diego Normal School, a teacher's college that was the forerunner to San Diego State University. Book-ended on the west by University Heights and Kensington on the east, Normal Heights completes the Adams Avenue neighborhood trifecta along the main corridor. Diverse apartment dwellings on the south side of Adams, with more single-family homes on the north side.

What’s “normal” today is to find antique stores, book stores, coffee shops and restaurants stretched out for blocks in the central business district’s "Adam’s Avenue".