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Living in Piedmont feels distinctively family-oriented and comforting. Single family homes are often large, with lovely, well-tended landscapes. The desirability of this neighborhood is reflected in the median home price (over $2M in 2017) as well as the steady increase in property values over the past 10 years.
In the Roaring Twenties, Piedmont was known as the “City of Millionaires,” because more millionaires per square mile lived here than any other city in the United States. Many of these wealthy residents built mansions that still stand, notably on Sea View Avenue, Sotelo Avenue, and Glen Alpine Road in 'Alta' or Upper Piedmont.
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Where is Piedmont?
Piedmont is centrally located in the Oakland Hills below Highway 13 and minutes up the hill from both Piedmont Avenue and the Grand Avenue/ Lakeshore shopping districts. Moraga Avenue to the north and Park Blvd to the southeast are distinct boundaries, with Montclair neighborhoods south of Highway 13 forming the northeast border.
To the southwest and south respectively, Piedmont is bounded by the Lakeshore and Crocker Heights neighborhoods of Oakland. Oakland Avenue, running east-west through the city center, is a major thoroughfare.
While there is a sense of seclusion from any traffic or associated noise, access to San Francisco via I-580 is close by, as is Highway 13/24 for trips by car to Orinda, Walnut Creek and Concord. Public transit is also readily available to either the city or Concord via the Highland Avenue 33 bus line to 12th Street/ Oakland City Center BART station. For park and ride, MacArthur and Rockridge BART stations are also convenient, usually less than 10 minutes by car.
Things to do in Piedmont
Piedmont's central location gives residents easy access to all the east bay has to offer for fine dining, nightlife, and outdoor activities; but within the city limits of this tiny hamlet residents will find some real gems of small-town fun.
Annual town events include an eagerly anticipated July 4th Parade, Movies in the Park during the summer months, a fall Harvest Festival, Halloween Haunted House, Thanksgiving Turkey Trot, and almost-magical Christmas tree-lighting ceremony. Piedmont High School hosts an annual "bird-calling contest" that was once featured on both "The Tonight Show" with Johnny Carson and "The Late Show With David Letterman."
Piedmont Neighborhood Schools
The Piedmont Unified School District (PUSD) is home to some of the east bay's most highly rated public schools. This little city boasts 3 elementary schools (Beach, Havens, and Wildwood), a middle school, and 2 high schools (Piedmont High and Millennium). The middle school is particularly strong, with excellent teachers, and most "Piedmont kids" go on to attend Piedmont High together.
As a WASC-approved alternative high school, Millennium challenges students with diverse learning styles to excel within small, interactive, non-competitive classrooms. Community and parent involvement are a big part of the Piedmont schools, providing a superior environment for both academic and athletic excellence.
The PUSD has an average student to teacher ratio of 19 to 1, far lower than the national average. Piedmont Adult School is another benefit provided to residents of the area, with programs that include Creative Retirement, a Diversity Film Series, arts, cooking, languages, music, and excellent business classes.