11 January 2011

Oakland Marathon neighborhood tour - # 4 - Piedmont Avenue

Piedmont Avenue starts as a diagonal street that breaks off from Broadway and concludes at the entrance to a large cemetery, a short distance beyond the intersection with Pleasant Valley Avenue.

The vibrant, walkable business area is between Macarthur Boulevard and 51st Avenue and includes many shops, restaurants, bars, and a theatre.

Fenton's Creamery, a longtime East Bay favorite, calls this neighborhood home, as does one of Oakland's long time high-end restaurants, Bay Wolf.  Cato's Ale House, is a favorite place of mine for a great selection of draft beers, pizza and salads.

For a list of Piedmont Avenue businesses see this article from the Chronicle and this map from the Oakland CVB.

The heart of the Piedmont Avenue neighborhood is the intersection of Piedmont Avenue with 41st Avenue.  The marathon course takes a left turn on 41st.

J's Coffee Shop at this intersection was built originally as the waiting room for the Key System interurban trains that ran from here to downtown San Francisco on the lower level of the Bay Bridge.  (The large parking area behind J's was where the tracks and trainshed were.)

Key System mural

Surprisingly perhaps, Piedmont Avenue is entirely within the city limits of Oakland.  The separate (and very, very wealthy) city of Piedmont is close to Piedmont Avenue but not a part of it.  The city of Piedmont shares the 94611 zipcode with parts of Oakland but is otherwise its own entity.

Oakland Marathon neighborhood tour - navigational links:
Backward to: Auto Row
Forward to: Temescal
Oakland Marathon website

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