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Oakland condos are a specialty of mine, and I know them well. Oakland condominiums and lofts are unique in Oakland because each is a piece of Oakland history, and an architectural statement of the many eras of Oakland's development. But why choose Oakland over any other city in the area? To answer that, you need to know a bit about this vital cosmopolitan area.
Oakland is ideally located at the center of the larger San Francisco metropolitan area. With San Francisco just across the bay, Berkeley, UC Berkeley and Emeryville to the north, Contra Costa cities like Lafayette and Walnut Creek to the east, employment, education, and recreational opportunities are as varied as the cities themselves. The Bay Area Rapid Transit Authority (BART) efficiently links all these cities making commuting a pleasure rather than a chore, as does an excellent bus system.
Should you choose to work locally, many large corporations have made their home in Oakland. Some of the largest that have been growing recently, include Kaiser, Southwest Airlines, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital, Alta Bates Summit Medical Center and United Parcel Service. The Port of Oakland includes a huge and vital airport and shipping complex, and Uber is opening a downtown campus in 2018.
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What Makes Oakland Condos Special?
As indicated in the opening paragraph, each collection of condominiums come with its own history. A good example would be those around Jack London Square and the Oakland Estuary. Many of the condos here were originally something else-a factory of some sort- a brass factory, or glass manufacturer as an example, while some were often developed from old corporate businesses that moved elsewhere to expand. The history of this area is tied to the Port of Oakland, especially after World War ll. As shipping grew in the area, and imports from all over the world began to flow in, competition increased significantly for the local manufacturer. Add to this the fact that the rise of container shipping made large warehouse space for storage of incoming goods obsolete, and you see an area ripe for building conversions, and a source of reasonably priced property to create new visions. Condos along the waterfront area include 288-3rd Street, and 200 2nd Street.
Condominiums have sprung up to fill in the housing gap when there is either a shortage of single family homes available, or where the initial cost of a single family home is often too much for the beginning buyer. Around the shores of Lake Merritt, as housing purchasing became a problem, many apartments of every style and design were converted into condos. From the most expensive high rise to the humble 4 unit apartment site, condos sprung up everywhere. The good news is that there is a plentiful and varied supply for your consideration. This has been evident in the Lake Merritt, Adams Point, Grand Lake , and the Lakeshore neighborhoods. To add a bit more luxury, some very elegant high rise condominiums were built as well. Two of the most handsome is 1 Lakeside Drive, and 565 Bellevue.
In the last few years, as single family homes have gotten more and more expensive, there has been a demand by buyers to be present in a more expensive neighborhood, but at a lesser cost. To meet that demand, condominiums in the Oakland hills have been developing steadily. Neighborhoods would include Hiller Highlands, and Leona Heights . Examples would be the new and very dramatic Skyview development, and Parkwoods Condos.
What To Do In Oakland
So much of the activities that are available in Oakland are centered around Jack London Square and downtown Oakland. Whether you are looking for music, restaurants, shopping, recreation or entertainment, you will find something here to meet your needs.
Starting with Jack London Square, there is an outstanding selection of restaurants-some elegant, some super casual. The Plank Restaurant offers food for all ages, in addition to an indoor bowling alley and video games, while nearby the elegant Scott's restaurant has white tablecloth dining. The famous musical venue of Yoshi's attracts jazz fans at each change of artists. Each Sunday, there is an extremely popular Farmer's Market at the Square that offer food, entertainment, vendors and crafts. A similar event takes place on the Second Saturday.
Located along the scenic Oakland estuary, adjacent to the Square, there are kayaks to be rented, walks to take, and, if you want to venture further, the Oakland Ferry to San Francisco awaits your pleasure, as does the Potomac--the former Presidential yacht of FDR. Further downtown are the dramatically renovated Fox Oakland and Paramount theaters that are a stunning venue for plays, concerts and movies. Not far away is the Oakland Museum of California that features the art, science and history of the state and features numerous family interactive opportunities year round.
Shopping is extremely varied and creative depending on your choice of neighborhoods. Small restaurants and artist abound from downtown up to the foothills of the city. The most popular centers include Rockridge, Montclair and the Grand Lake and Lakeshore Avenues. Right at Grand Lake there is another very active and glowing historic Grand Lake Theater that still shows motion pictures daily.
Moving into the foothills of Oakland there are numerous park reserves with hiking, biking and picnic trails for outdoor enjoyment. Lastly, there is the huge draw of the sports at the Oakland Coliseum Complex. This is the home of the NBA Champion Golden State Warriors, the exciting Oakland Raiders, and the dramatic Oakland Athletics.