Communities

BRT takes you there

The 9.5-mile Bus Rapid Transit route makes a host of destinations more accessible for commuters.

BRT’s northern terminus is in the heart of Oakland’s downtown business district. Whether your trip takes you to your job or to interact with a government agency, BRT will make the trip faster.

 

Downtown Oakland

Downtown Oakland is the hub of jobs – from government offices to major corporations. But popular entertainment venues and historic sites also are arrayed near the BRT route.

Near the northern terminus of the route are the Paramount and Fox theaters, popular venues for touring shows and local celebrations.

Oakland’s City Hall at Frank Ogawa Plaza was the tallest building west of the Mississippi when it was completed in 1914. Nearby is the Pardee Home Museum, home of two Oakland mayors and one California governor in the early years of the 20th Century. And downtown is also home to the African-American History Museum and Library.

Chinatown

The hustle and bustle of Oakland’s Chinatown features a wonderful mix of tastes and smells, languages and unique goods. Local merchants are the driving force but picking a favorite restaurant can be difficult. Whether your tastes run to Shanghai street food or classic duck, you’ve got choices in Chinatown.

Also along this stretch of the route are the Oakland Museum of California, home to everything from fossils to art, and the campus of Laney College where about 14,000 students are enrolled in variety of disciplines.

Eastlake

As the BRT route turns onto International Boulevard, it is on the doorstep of the Oakland Unified School District headquarters. The Kaiser corporate center is also nearby, making this a major jobs center.

The community takes its name from the adjacent Lake Merritt, home to a boating center, gardens and a children’s fairyland. All are a short walk from the BRT route.

San Antonio

This neighborhood offers another glimpse of the melting pot of cultures that is Oakland’s rich heritage. Small businesses – including many run by Vietnamese entrepreneurs – mark this area.

The San Antonio Recreation Center and Sports Complex is a short walk up 19th Avenue.

The neighborhood is also home to two of the region’s most innovative educational programs — the Aspire Schools campus and Think College Now.

Fruitvale

This area has enjoyed a renaissance in recent years and is home to many restaurants, shops and the popular Fruitvale Public Market.

It is the home to the Cesar Chavez branch of the Oakland library, the nation’s first library branch designed to serve the Hispanic community. (See Librarian Looks Forward to BRT.)

Each October, the Fruitvale community plays host to the Dia de los Muertos Festival, one of the region’s largest of its kind.

Havenscourt-Lockwood

Much of this stretch of the route is lined by manufacturing and warehousing facilities as well as small business. But that doesn’t mean it’s short on things to do.

The Digital Arts and Culinary Academy offers teens a place to make their artistic, musical and food preparation career dreams come alive.

For fun of another kind, check out the Parks & Recreation Department’s Rainbow Recreation Center at 5800 International.

Hegenberger

This neighborhood is the gateway to the sports and entertainment complex – Oracle Arena and the O.co Coliseum – and to Oakland International Airport via Hegenberger Expressway.

In recent years, the area has seen an influx of offices and business development rippling from the airport, making this a growing job center.

Elmhurst

Variety is the key in this community.

For the young, the Boys & Girls Club of Oakland has a major facility at 8530 International Blvd.

The historic Allen Temple Baptist Church offers many things for all ages. Its expansive campus includes a theater, a gymnasium, a library and a living center, all of which host community activities. The church also operates several affordable housing communities in the area.

San Leandro

The BRT route leads through San Leandro’s historic retail district. Commerce is a major focus along this stretch of the route, with the Durant Marketplace and the East 14th Street Business District.

Among the interesting sites is the San Leandro Plaza History Walk. There plaques detail the development of the historic community that dates to more than century before California achieved statehood.

The BRT route concludes at the San Leandro BART station.