Author Topic: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016  (Read 805 times)

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Offline taestell

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Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« on: March 08, 2017, 11:20:21 PM »
Late last year, I was spending a lot of time in San Jose for work. It was a pretty crazy project so I didn't have a lot of time to get out and explore. However I did manage to squeeze in visits to a few parts of the Bay Area that I hadn't seen before. Here's a random assortment of photos from the area.


San Jose



















In an attempt to cut down the costs on my expense reports (the Bay Area is super expensive!), I ended up staying a few nights at this super shady hotel. Probably the creepiest place I've ever stayed:






Palo Alto




Santa Cruz













As you can tell I was fascinated by the old motels. I did some Google Street View research in advance and wanted to photograph these old motels but they had all been demolished when I got there:




Mount Hamilton








Muir Woods






Muir Beach Overlook










Petaluma







Everyone who lives here thinks they're a hippie:








And with this thread, I've posted all of my 2016 photos!
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Offline PhilaDayphiaMan

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2017, 11:42:48 PM »
I haven't even started on my 2015!  Jealous!

Oh, and excellent shots.
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Offline taestell

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2017, 11:50:50 PM »
Chris, I posted my pics from our trip to SF a year ago! Get with it!
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Offline mrnyc

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2017, 09:11:32 AM »
nice and i like the googie/jet age focus.
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Offline mrclifton88

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2017, 09:32:43 AM »
Great thread!  I like the unique things you captured.  I grew up in Lodi, a little ways away in the central valley.  California is an interesting place... there are beautiful and amazing places like Muir Woods and the coast, but nobody can afford to live in those areas.  The "real" parts of California that are not as glamorous are not what people in Ohio think of.  I still love to visit but don't miss living there!

Offline Rob Jaques

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2017, 12:43:27 PM »
Great thread!  I like the unique things you captured.  I grew up in Lodi, a little ways away in the central valley.  California is an interesting place... there are beautiful and amazing places like Muir Woods and the coast, but nobody can afford to live in those areas.  The "real" parts of California that are not as glamorous are not what people in Ohio think of.  I still love to visit but don't miss living there!

And yet the Bay Area is home to around 8 million people... haha. Like the quote "no one goes there, it's too crowded." It is pricey, though. I'm fortunate enough to have found a planning job that pays enough to live in SF proper. Housing costs are something that regional planners are working on, but it's a statewide issue, unfortunately.

The 'real' parts of California, i.e. the Central Valley and others are so similar to the rolling farmlands of the midwest. Driving along the 5 between LA and SF reminds me a bit, at times, or driving through Ohio.
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Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2017, 02:22:48 PM »
Yeah, but can you afford to live alone? Living independently is the only fair way to compare cost of living. I have tons of friends from New York who moved to San Francisco and they say, "I'm still only paying $2,000 a month in rent!" What they fail to mention is that they had their own nice studio apartment in Manhattan and now they are sharing an apartment with two to three roommates from craigslist in San Francisco for the same rent they were paying to live alone. They also fail to mention that they are not on the lease, and are subtenants at the mercy of master tenants. As a master tenant, I'm well aware that I have a lot of power over newcomers, but I don't abuse it the way all my native and long-term friends do in San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley. Even in NYC, it's tough to pull off living for free like tens of thousands of master tenants do in SF/OAK. Not to mention turning your apartment into an Airbnb tech hostel is more lucrative in the Bay than anywhere else. I have tons of friends who have done that and now are retired in their 20s.

The Bay's politics are eradicating the upper middle class at warp speed. Though it's Oakland that deserves the vast majority of the blame, not San Francisco. San Francisco is now finally building some mixed-income housing while virtually nothing is being built in half-destroyed Oakland where thousands of empty lots sit vacant forever due to protests and riots against all housing construction. The NIBMY politics of Oakland are the greediest in the world.

But San Jose is where the biggest political sea change has happened. NIMBYs have incredible power in Oakland, some power in San Francisco, but very little power in San Jose. San Jose went through the sea change that LA went through where NIMBYs are now struggling to block housing construction. NIMBYs in Oakland are successful at killing housing projects almost any time they are proposed. NIMBYs are successful at delaying projects in San Francisco. But San Jose is where the real housing construction is at...hence why it's now cheaper pound-for-pound than the rest of the Bay's big cities despite its higher incomes.

The 'real' parts of California, i.e. the Central Valley and others are so similar to the rolling farmlands of the midwest. Driving along the 5 between LA and SF reminds me a bit, at times, or driving through Ohio.

Sacramento = Columbus. The Bay is similar to Ohio and Michigan in urban structure with the obvious exception of San Francisco proper. Oakland = Toledo (but for ten times the cost of living and with much crappier amenities/people). Alameda = Sandusky (for ten times the cost). Berkeley = Ann Arbor (for triple the cost).
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 02:46:26 PM by C-Dawg »

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2017, 02:42:23 PM »
C-Dawg, I was shocked while touring the streets of Oakland on Google Streetview to see that the very first BART station on the east side of the transbay tube is surrounded by derelict houses and empty lots.  It looks like goddamn Hamilton or Middletown but with an elevated rapid transit station with trains coming and going every 90 seconds, just a 5-minute ride from downtown San Francisco. 

Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2017, 02:47:31 PM »
C-Dawg, I was shocked while touring the streets of Oakland on Google Streetview to see that the very first BART station on the east side of the transbay tube is surrounded by derelict houses and empty lots.  It looks like goddamn Hamilton or Middletown but with an elevated rapid transit station with trains coming and going every 90 seconds, just a 5-minute ride from downtown San Francisco. 

It's far worse! West Oakland is a suburban, car-dependent craphole that's mostly vacant lots where millionaire hipsters protest housing construction. It's crazy that people pay millions of dollars to live in such a horrible neighborhood just so their hipster friends think they're cool. There have been tons of protests around West Oakland station whenever high-density TOD is proposed. Oakland is America's worst city by any measure due to its insane prices and insane politics.

Downtown Oakland is a much lamer, crappier, dirtier, more crime-ridden version of Downtown Toledo. Oakland is almost identical to Toledo, just with uglier architecture and a lot less brick. Oakland also doesn't have any rowhousing like Toledo does.

The only parts of Oakland with any redeeming value are the Eastlake, Cleveland Heights, and Adams Point neighborhoods. They are like Toledo's good hoods before Toledo's economy collapsed...though obviously way more expensive. Housing on Lake Merritt is the most expensive real estate in Oakland and anywhere in America outside of SF/Manhattan.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 08:45:54 PM by C-Dawg »

Offline Rob Jaques

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2017, 02:52:43 PM »
Yeah, but can you afford to live alone? Living independently is the only fair way to compare cost of living. I have tons of friends from New York who moved to San Francisco and they say, "I'm still only paying $2,000 a month in rent!" What they fail to mention is that they had their own nice studio apartment in Manhattan and now they are sharing an apartment with two to three roommates from craigslist in San Francisco for the same rent they were paying to live alone. They also fail to mention that they are not on the lease, and are subtenants at the mercy of master tenants. As a master tenant, I'm well aware that I have a lot of power over newcomers, but I don't abuse it the way all my native and long-term friends do in San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley. Even in NYC, it's tough to pull off living for free like tens of thousands of master tenants do in SF/OAK. Not to mention turning your apartment into an Airbnb tech hostel is more lucrative in the Bay than anywhere else. I have tons of friends who have done that and now are retired in their 20s.

The Bay's politics are eradicating the upper middle class at warp speed. Though it's Oakland that deserves the vast majority of the blame, not San Francisco. San Francisco is now finally building some mixed-income housing while virtually nothing is being built in half-destroyed Oakland where thousands of empty lots sit vacant forever due to protests and riots against all housing construction. The NIBMY politics of Oakland are the greediest in the world.

But San Jose is where the biggest political sea change has happened. NIMBYs have incredible power in Oakland, some power in San Francisco, but very little power in San Jose. San Jose went through the sea change that LA went through where NIMBYs are now struggling to block housing construction. NIMBYs in Oakland are successful at killing housing projects almost any time they are proposed. NIMBYs are successful at delaying projects in San Francisco. But San Jose is where the real housing construction is at...hence why it's now cheaper pound-for-pound than the rest of the Bay's big cities despite its higher incomes.

The 'real' parts of California, i.e. the Central Valley and others are so similar to the rolling farmlands of the midwest. Driving along the 5 between LA and SF reminds me a bit, at times, or driving through Ohio.

Sacramento = Columbus. The Bay is similar to Ohio and Michigan in urban structure with the obvious exception of San Francisco proper. Oakland = Toledo (but for ten times the cost of living and with much crappier amenities/people). Alameda = Sandusky (for ten times the cost). Berkeley = Ann Arbor (for triple the cost).

I lived with 2 roommates for the last 10 months, but am moving in to a 1-bedroom at the end of the month. So, yes, I can afford to live in the city.
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Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2017, 02:54:01 PM »
^But are you renting or owning? Can you ever own? Obviously public sector jobs in SF are the highest paying in the country, but is it enough to actually buy a place?

*Tech jobs and medical jobs are the highest paying too, but similar problem...

I don't know how anyone not on a six-figure track is going to survive.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 02:55:41 PM by C-Dawg »

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2017, 02:55:21 PM »
Looking again (I'm at work), it appears that the BART parking lot at the very least could be the site of a pair of 300-unit apartment buildings.  Why would that be controversial?  I can see trying to preserve the existing old housing stock, which looks like the kind of stuff that sells for $40k in Cincinnati, but there are empty lots all over the place that could become 4-famlies or 10-unit buildings. 

Meanwhile, there appears to be a fair amount of new construction (1980s-onward) but it's all pretty low-density 2-3 floor apartments.  The kind of stuff the government has put up that is sort-of public housing but tries to look like a suburban complex. 

Offline Rob Jaques

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2017, 02:55:40 PM »
^But are you renting or owning? Can you ever own?

The implication is that ownership is the goal. I don't know if it is for me. That being said, while I can't afford to own right now as I make substantial student loan repayments, I anticipate that I could own within the 10-year range.
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Offline Rob Jaques

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2017, 02:56:40 PM »
Looking again (I'm at work), it appears that the BART parking lot at the very least could be the site of a pair of 300-unit apartment buildings.  Why would that be controversial?  I can see trying to preserve the existing old housing stock, which looks like the kind of stuff that sells for $40k in Cincinnati, but there are empty lots all over the place that could become 4-famlies or 10-unit buildings. 

Meanwhile, there appears to be a fair amount of new construction (1980s-onward) but it's all pretty low-density 2-3 floor apartments.  The kind of stuff the government has put up that is sort-of public housing but tries to look like a suburban complex. 

BART is trying to do that. But you should look up the controversy that has arisen around a proposal by (i think) BART to do that at/neat the Macarthur Station.
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Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2017, 02:57:22 PM »
Looking again (I'm at work), it appears that the BART parking lot at the very least could be the site of a pair of 300-unit apartment buildings.  Why would that be controversial?  I can see trying to preserve the existing old housing stock, which looks like the kind of stuff that sells for $40k in Cincinnati, but there are empty lots all over the place that could become 4-famlies or 10-unit buildings. 

Meanwhile, there appears to be a fair amount of new construction (1980s-onward) but it's all pretty low-density 2-3 floor apartments.  The kind of stuff the government has put up that is sort-of public housing but tries to look like a suburban complex. 

Here you go...welcome to Oakland!

http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/the-fight-to-develop-west-oakland/Content?oid=4013953

https://ww2.kqed.org/news/06/13/2014/-west-oakland-coffee-shop-vandalized/
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 02:58:18 PM by C-Dawg »

Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2017, 02:59:16 PM »
Looking again (I'm at work), it appears that the BART parking lot at the very least could be the site of a pair of 300-unit apartment buildings.  Why would that be controversial?  I can see trying to preserve the existing old housing stock, which looks like the kind of stuff that sells for $40k in Cincinnati, but there are empty lots all over the place that could become 4-famlies or 10-unit buildings. 

Meanwhile, there appears to be a fair amount of new construction (1980s-onward) but it's all pretty low-density 2-3 floor apartments.  The kind of stuff the government has put up that is sort-of public housing but tries to look like a suburban complex. 

BART is trying to do that. But you should look up the controversy that has arisen around a proposal by (i think) BART to do that at/neat the Macarthur Station.

I live in Oakland. I know the project at West Oakland station is never going to happen, and other similar proposals are likely doomed. The politics in Oakland are wholly destructive and will prevent any large housing developments like that, particularly in West Oakland. Oakland is at least ten years away from any real political change that could allow adequate housing development. The greed in Oakland is completely off the charts compared to San Francisco (I'm an ex-San Franciscan). San Francisco's politics are night and day compared to Oakland. Oakland is the definition of regressive politics. People will do anything to block housing construction so their property values can keep going up 20-30% a year.

SF is far more progressive and it's a well-managed city for the most part, which is why I'm buying there. I would never invest a dime in Oakland. Developers are following suit by cancelling or delaying major projects. Until the city gets a handle on its riots and crime, there is going to be very little construction in Oakland. :|

*BART has good intentions and is one of the only public entities in the Bay looking towards the future, but they've got to deal with the extreme anti-growth politics of Oakland.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 03:28:05 PM by C-Dawg »

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2017, 03:02:07 PM »
I mean, you take a stroll around the area on streetview and you'd think you were in some sort of impoverished area, not the epicenter of American job growth. 

Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #17 on: March 14, 2017, 03:06:47 PM »
^Yeah, those dumps in West Oakland go for a million, all-cash now. It's complete insanity. Tech companies should relocate to the Rust Belt cities. Oakland is a much crappier version of Toledo, to say nothing of Cincinnati or Cleveland.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 03:07:41 PM by C-Dawg »

Offline taestell

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #18 on: March 14, 2017, 03:07:25 PM »
I'm always surprised by how much of an anti-gentrification attitude there seems to be in all of California. You would think that in the Bay Area, the libertarian tech bros would understand how supply and demand works, and that reducing new development will only cause existing housing costs to skyrocket even faster. I guess everyone wants their neighborhood to be frozen in amber at the time that they "discovered" it and not develop any more beyond that. Too bad for them, that's not how the world works.
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Offline C-Dawg

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Re: Bay Area (But No SF!) Fall/Winter 2016
« Reply #19 on: March 14, 2017, 03:08:56 PM »
^The great political mismatch is that the anti-gentrification stuff is strongest in wholly gentrified neighborhoods with the highest real estate costs in the entire world. The real reason for this in California is Prop 13. Don't be fooled about the gentrification angle. These are wolves in sheep's clothing. Protesters are overwhelmingly property owners (or master tenants of rent-controlled apartments). Due to Prop 13, your real estate taxes barely go up at all unless you sell. So the dump you bought in West Oakland for $200k five years ago that's now worth $1 million is still only taxed at $200k.

San Jose isn't seeing as much of this, hence why it's now cheaper. But even then, San Jose looks pretty crappy when you consider the prices. Oakland is the most overpriced city in the world by a long shot considering its dismal amenities, but the entire Bay is now pretty much a scam. However, there is one exception- San Francisco. SF is worth the money when you consider how expensive all the crappier places around it are too. San Francisco is a world class city. And in terms of jobs, it's where all the best ones are at. Oakland and San Jose are not major job centers. They are bedroom communities (Oakland for San Francisco, San Jose for Silicon Valley).
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 03:28:10 PM by C-Dawg »

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