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February 6, 2018 > Gateway to the East Bay

Gateway to the East Bay

By Dennis Waespi

A beautiful, newly renovated structure now greets visitors to the East Bay, thanks to a partnership between East Bay Regional Park District and Caltrans.

It?s the Bridge Yard Building, located at the foot of the east span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Constructed in 1938, the Bridge Yard was originally a repair facility for electric railroad cars of the old Key System, whose trains shuttled passengers between San Francisco and the East Bay. After its many years of industrial use, Caltrans and the Bay Area Toll Authority began a project in 2012 to restore the 24,000-square-foot building as an exhibit and public assembly space. Restoration retained the building?s 1930s era craftsmanship, and the structure is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Park District has signed a 10-year lease on the building with Caltrans. The Bridge Yard will be a focal point for the District?s planned gateway shoreline park, now under development, which will offer interpretive and recreational programs, dining, recreational equipment rental and the event venue.

Adjacent to the Bridge Yard Building is the Bay Bridge bicycle/pedestrian path, now open, on which visitors can walk or bicycle out to Yerba Buena Island, enjoying spectacular views of Oakland and the harbor along the way. The Bridge Yard will soon be open to the public with renovated restrooms and exhibits highlighting its history and construction of the Bay Bridge.

And there?s more. Demolishing the remaining footings of the old Bay Bridge would be an extremely expensive and environmentally disruptive process. So instead, the footings are being used as the foundation of a new pier, which will provide public access to San Francisco Bay for fishing and sightseeing. Altogether, the Bridge Yard Building, Gateway Park and pier will present a world-class entrance for visitors and residents alike traveling from San Francisco to the East Bay.

2018 summer season youth jobs
The park district has a wide variety of openings for paid employment, both in the near future and summertime. Job categories for youth include park maintenance, working with children, aquatics, and public safety.

Examples include gate attendants, student laborers, summer and academic interns, lifeguards?of whom the district hires approximately 180 each summer?day camp recreation leaders, public safety student aides with the district police department, and interpretive student aides. Some of the intern programs are linked to academic majors at local colleges. All of the job opportunities offer valuable paid work experience, especially for students interested in careers in nature education and park administration.

For more information, visit the park district website at, and click on ?Jobs? on the left side of the home page. Then click again on ?Job Opportunities.? At ?Job Opportunities,? you can see what?s available and apply online. The earliest deadline is March 8 for recreation leaders.

You can also phone the District Human Resources Department at (510) 544-2154.

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