College Ave

College Avenue Commerce Decades of Service : Rockridge Furniture and Design

Monday, November 16, 2015

Established by John Knight, Sr., Rockridge Furniture & Design at 5601 College has been on the Avenue since 1970. John was an accountant by trade, but his passion was as an antique collector, repairman and salesman. The business evolved as his clientele's tastes began to support the Arts and Crafts furniture style more complementary to the many bungalows in Rockridge. Meanwhile, John Knight, Jr., who received his B.S.

Merchants' Years of Service: A Home and Business Location on College Avenue Since 1886 Houses Kletz and Moll, Attorneys

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Queen Anne Victorian at 5315 College Avenue, shown above, first opened its doors to the Charles Shields family. Charles was a scene painter for Oakland's dramatic theatres, and the Shields family lived there until 1936. Records are not clear about ownership after that, but in the mid-'70s, the building housed an antique shop.

Kick-off slated for study of CN-1 zoning

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

A study of CN-1 zoning (the zoning for the College Ave commercial area, as well as other thriving Oakland neighborhood commercial areas) will kick off next Wednesday evening, May 27th, with a meeting at the Rockridge Branch Library.  RCPC's land use committee will be hosting the first meeting in conjunction with the monthly land use committee meeting.

Art on the Avenue: The Richard Diebenkorn Foundation

Saturday, May 9, 2015

On College Avenue, just on the north side of the Berkeley-Oakland border, is the office of the Richard Diebenkorn Foundation. Richard Diebenkorn (1922-1993) was a painter and printmaker who was raised in the Bay Area and spent the majority of his life in California. From 1956 to 1966, the Diebenkorn family lived in the Berkeley Hills near Rockridge.

College Avenue Commerce: Decades of Service, Part 7

Monday, March 9, 2015

• Yasai Market, at 6301 College Avenue, was opened in 1980 by John Amano. John's sister-in-law is the owner of Berkeley Bowl; John was raised in the vegetable business and worked at Berkeley Bowl before opening Yasai (which means vegetables in Japanese). John sold to current owners Michael and Bu Pak in 1992; they kept the name. When I spoke with Bu about the impact of the Safeway construction, the conversation topic drifted to competition. She reminded me that small stores aren't automatically noncompetitive.

Art on the Avenue:Bosko's Framing Gallery

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Bosko's Framing Gallery is starting its 70th year in business at the southeast corner of College and Armanino Court. Currently in the display windows at Bosko's are a colorful variety of objets d'art: paintings by Lynne Bostick, Jason Schoner, and Rip Matteson, watercolors by Wendy Yoshimura, giclee prints by Lois Wachner-Solomon, and vintage pottery.

Merchants' Years of Service: Part 6

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Transports was started by Kei Kodani in 1982 in a small space above Barclay's Pub. Kei began the business selling camping and hiking equipment, and it seemed to complement the adjacent store that focused on running shoes. However, when that store went out of business, the salesmen providing that inventory convinced Kei, himself a runner, to carry their lines. Shortly thereafter, Kei moved a few doors up the street and next to the then-location of the Sierra Club bookstore where he remained for 20 years.

Rockridge Cornucopia: Hardware Store Cooking Basics

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Finally we have a hardware store on College! For more than 30 years, when friends would comment how lucky we were to live near so many great restaurants and shops, my response was always the same: "But we don't have a neighborhood hardware store."

Vernon Rock-Ridge Hall, 1913, known today as Ye Olde Hut

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The photograph shows children in front of the Vernon Rock-Ridge Hall, a community clubhouse of the Vernon Rock-Ridge Improvement Club, designed by its president, architect Clarence A. Tantau and completed in 1913 as the first of its kind in Oakland. Financing for the structure came through a cooperative sale of shares with a final total of 85 shareholders among members of the community. The facility served as a clubhouse for community events and as a children's center. The structure has housed Ye Olde Hut, a familiar saloon along the College Avenue commercial strip, for many years.

College Avenue: Merchants' Years of Service, Part 5

Saturday, January 10, 2015

•    Duck Soup Family Playschool, 5304 Bryant Avenue at the Broadway end of College, is visible as the rainbow-colored home on the corner and known as "the cuddlesome place for children." Operating the playschool since 1980, Becca Rae Calato has been the owner and primary teacher since 1986 and lives in the home.

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