Temescal: "Oakland's answer to San Francisco's Mission District"

The Wall Street Journal actually produced an interesting piece on how “yupsters” and capitalists made a shitty part of Oakland cool and profitable.  Choice quotes:

Over the past five years, Temescal has become Oakland’s answer to San Francisco’s Mission District and the city of Berkeley, drawing a mix of yuppies and plaid-wearing hipsters. The changing demographics and new businesses have brought results: From fiscal year 2004 to fiscal year 2008, the latest year for which data are available, Oakland’s sales-tax receipts from the Temescal area rose 18% from $294,735 to $348,917, said Keira Williams, retail specialist for the city of Oakland.

The neighborhood still has its lingering troubles. On a recent evening, as young couples parked their strollers outside the Lanesplitter Pub to wait for a table, a panhandler stumbled by, muttering about heroin. Residents say they must be especially wary around Lower Temescal, near 40th Street and the BART station, where empty storefronts and vacant lots dot the avenue.


(photo by unaesthetic)

14 Responses to “Temescal: "Oakland's answer to San Francisco's Mission District"”

  1. candlestickkid says:


  2. candlestickkid says:

    GOOD for Oakland. Please follow the trend!!

  3. If only Oakland had had its own Chris Daly and Chicken John Rinaldi, this senseless tragedy could have been averted. Will no one think of the empty storefronts?!

    • SFResident says:

      I’ll take SF politics over the incredibly corrupt Oakland politics any day. We may do some cringe-worthy things but Oakland government takes counterproductive cronyism to a new level.

  4. pixeltan says:

    This is all really, really sad. The entitled, direct their vision of improvement in an area, where little has been done to truly help the current residents. What the city sees improvement economically, isn’t circulated back into the strata of the community that needs it. Instead, we see “improvements” that cater to those entitled that started or will continue to drive out the current inhabitants instead of showing them how to improve their situations and communities.

    • Mission Mistaken says:

      Well pixie, those mushily misguided and frighteningly messianic sentiments would fit perfectly fine in the days of Missions and Catholic conversion upon which much of this state was founded. The notion that somehow if the enlightened would come in a show the unwashed how to do it right.

      In my experienced, the unwashed much prefer for the enlightened to come in, drive up their property values, and buy them out. But heaven forbid we allow such a thing to happen. That would be positively anti-Bolivarian.

      • pixeltan says:

        Really? That’s not what I get from the people I’ve talked to while I lived near the Temescal area. And yes, I was referencing Missionaries because of the slight similarities.

    • Thank you for living down to the stereotype.

  5. Tss, Temescal is more like the North Beach of Oakland. Fruitvale is more Mission-y, but I really like Uptown. I have a nice big studio in a Victorian in the heart of the city and my mailbox only gets broken into every OTHER day.

    Dear broke-ass Missionites, come live in Uptown with me and open your little food carts. x

    • pixeltan says:

      Only if the food carts don’t close by 8pm every freaking night like most of the stores in Oaklandia. Of course there’s always the Safeways near CCA Oakland and the one in Berkeley, but do I really need to ride/drive/bus 2+ miles to get a couple things?

      Oakland is great, but damn, the options are limiting for late night food—at least for those of us that have to work late hours.

      • SFResident says:

        True story – the lack of late-night eating establishments is one of the biggest issues that drove me out of the East Bay.

  6. spiro says:

    Temescal: Where Mission hipsters come to breed.

  7. Renzomatic says:

    The opening up of shops and businesses does (at least) two obvious things: It generates jobs, many of which will be for small businesses that employ local people (potentially those very same people living there prior to the change in demographics). Also, the added tax receipts would go into City coffer’s (ostensibly) to provide additional services to the city at large (including social services and general upkeep of the city) including those residents under their luck already living in the neighborhood. To say that the prior residents don’t benefit is myopic. To restrict any increase in business in any way, let alone in this particular neighborhood, is to restrict the city’s ability to receive any taxes and as would naturally follow, any services that benefit from increased tax revenue. Should that occur, then no services are provided to anyone. The alternative, as I vaguely see suggested, is to leave Temescal alone, and simply keep the “have’s” in one neighborhood and don’t don’t distub the “have-not’s” in their neighborhood, but all this would accomplish is a further chasm and divisiveness between the two groups.

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