Portal:San Francisco Bay Area
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Portal:San Francisco Bay Area

The San Francisco Bay Area Portal

California Bay Area county map
SF Bay area USGS.jpg

The San Francisco Bay Area (referred to locally as the Bay Area) is a populous region surrounding the San Francisco and San Pablo estuaries in Northern California. The region encompasses the major cities and metropolitan areas of San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland, along with smaller urban and rural areas. The Bay Area's nine counties are Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma. Home to approximately 7.68 million people, the nine-county Bay Area contains many cities, towns, airports, and associated regional, state, and national parks, connected by a network of roads, highways, railroads, bridges, tunnels, and commuter rail. The combined statistical area of the region is the second-largest in California (after the Greater Los Angeles area), the fifth-largest in the United States, and the 43rd-largest urban area in the world with 8.80 million people.

The Bay Area has the second-most Fortune 500 companies in the United States, after the New York metropolitan area, and is known for its natural beauty, liberal politics, entrepreneurship, and diversity. The area ranks second in highest density of college graduates, after the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and performs above the state median household income in the 2010 census; it includes the five highest California counties by per capita income and two of the top 25 wealthiest counties in the United States. Based on a 2013 population report from the California Department of Finance, the Bay Area is the only region in California where the rate of people migrating in from other areas in the United States is greater than the rate of those leaving the region, led by Alameda and Contra Costa counties. (more...)

Selected article

Stanford Memorial Church May 2011 001.jpg
Stanford Memorial Church is located at the center of the Stanford University campus in Stanford, California, United States. It was built during the American Renaissance by Jane Stanford as a memorial to her husband Leland. Designed by architect Charles A. Coolidge, a protégé of Henry Hobson Richardson, the church has been called "the University's architectural crown jewel".

Designs for the church were submitted to Jane Stanford and the university trustees in 1898, and it was dedicated in 1903. The building is Romanesque in form and Byzantine in its details, inspired by churches in the region of Venice and, especially, Ravenna. Its stained glass windows and extensive mosaics are based on religious paintings the Stanfords admired in Europe. The church has four pipe organs, which allow musicians to produce many styles of organ music. Stanford Memorial Church has withstood two major earthquakes, in 1906 and 1989, and was extensively renovated after each.

Stanford Memorial Church was the earliest and has been "among the most prominent" non-denominational churches on the West Coast of the United States. Since its dedication in 1903, the church's goal has been to serve the spiritual needs of the university in a non-sectarian way. The church's first chaplain, David Charles Gardner, began a tradition of leadership which has guided the development of Stanford University's spiritual, ethical, and academic relation to religion. The church's chaplains were instrumental in the founding of Stanford's religious studies department, moving Stanford from a "completely secular university" at the middle of the century to "the renaissance of faith and learning at Stanford" in the late 1960s, when the study of religion at the university focused on social and ethical issues like race and the Vietnam War. (more...)

Selected biography

Judge George Crothers.jpg
George Edward Crothers (May 27, 1870 - May 16, 1957) was one of the first students at Stanford University and was instrumental in putting the university on a solid legal and financial footing following the deaths of its founders, Leland and Jane Stanford. He served as a member of Stanford's board of trustees and as a California superior court judge. His monetary gifts to his alma mater made possible the construction of two student residences on the Stanford campus--one named for himself, the other dedicated to the memory of his mother. (more...)

Selected city

Broadway Plaza (Walnut Creek, California) 14 2017-04-29.jpg Walnut Creek is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States, located in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, about 16 miles (26 kilometres) east of the city of Oakland. With a total estimated population of 67,673, Walnut Creek serves as a hub for its neighboring cities because of its location at the junction of the highways from Sacramento and San Jose (I-680) and San Francisco/Oakland (SR-24) and its accessibility by BART. Its active downtown neighborhood features hundred-year-old buildings and extensive high-end retail establishments, restaurants and entertainment venues.

Walnut Creek owns more open space per capita than any other community in the state of California. In 1974, Walnut Creek voters approved a $6.7 million bond measure that allowed the city to purchase 1,800 acres (730 ha) of undeveloped hillsides, ridge lines, and park sites. Walnut Creek owns parts of Lime Ridge Open Space, Shell Ridge Open Space, Acalanes Ridge Open Space, and Sugarloaf Open Space. (more...)

Selected image

Restaurant palace san francisco 2007.jpg
Palace Hotel restaurant, San Francisco
image credit: Larry D. Moore

Recently in the Bay Area

2018
London Breed
Ron Dellums

The Bay Area by year

1847
Sam Brannan

Selected historical image

LLOYD(1876) DEPARTURE OF STEAMER pg565.jpg
Steamship at the San Francisco waterfront, 1876
image credit: LLOYD, B. E.

Did you know...

Emiko Omori and Victor Wong
Tim Stearns
The Oceanic, 1871
Ghost Ship warehouse interior

 • ... that filmmaker Emiko Omori (pictured, left, with Victor Wong) began her career in 1968 at KQED, becoming one of the first camerawomen to work in news documentaries?
 • ... that Fisher Creek is tributary to the largest freshwater wetland in Santa Clara County, Laguna Seca, a seasonal lake important to groundwater recharge and migratory birds?
 • ... that San Francisco based architect Jack Hillmer is known for his meticulously hand-crafted Modernist homes built from redwood, and was an exponent of what Lewis Mumford called the "Bay Region style"?
 • ... that Stanford University Department of Biology chairman Tim Stearns (pictured), together with his wife, medical researcher Susan Cleveland, tend a fruit tree orchard at their home in Redwood City?
 • ... that the Occidental and Oriental Steamship Company's flagship, the Oceanic (pictured), set a Pacific crossing record of 16 days and 10 hours, 8 days less than the ships of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company?
 • ... that the building consumed in the 2016 Oakland warehouse fire had at least ten complaints filed on it since 1998? (interior damage pictured)
 • ... that after Agnes Fay Morgan conducted a nutritional study with foxes, she presented her data wearing a stole made from the fur of her subjects?

Previous Did you know...

Edsel with "abused" customers in 1982.
Grafton Tyler Brown.jpg



April - June 2012

Selected periodic event

Litquake attendee, local author Zarina Zabrisky

Litquake is a literary festival in San Francisco, first held in 1999. It has been described as "Literature as Carnival". In 2012, Litquake featured a total of 860 authors over the course of the 9 day festival. The festival closes with a "Lit Crawl," a literary pub crawl that includes bars, cafes, bookstores, theaters, galleries, clothing boutiques, furniture showrooms, parking lots, a laundromat and even a bee-keeping store. (local author and attendee Zarina Zabrisky pictured)

Quote

Jaron Lanier 1.jpg
~ Jaron Lanier, New York Times interview, 2011

Selected multimedia file

Rattlesnakes, Windy Hill Open Space Preserve, Portola Valley, San Mateo County
credit: Dawn Endico

Bay Area regions, geographic features and protected areas

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  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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