Monday Morning Distractions – Jack London Square

4 May

Unintentionally, my blog has become a bit heavy over the past couple weeks. There’s just been so much going on in the political realm that there’s been little time to reflect on the unfiltered beautfy of Oakland. It’s also been a ridiculously long time since I’ve posted a Monday morning distractions post so I thought I was due in. Hopefully this will be the start to bringing back some balance to Living in the O.

A few weeks ago, I had a meeting on a sunny Saturday morning near Jack London Square so afterward I decided to walk down to JLS. One of the first things I noticed was that Jack London Market looked completely finished.


I’m guessing they’re still working on the interior, and of course they still have to lease the spaces, but it’s exciting to see the building nearly completed.

I walked along the water and enjoyed the gorgeous view. The Bay was packed with people on boats enjoying the day.


It had been quite a long time since I’d walked along this part of the water, and I hadn’t remembered how pleasant it could be. There were tons of benches to sit on, and plenty of beautiful succulents and flowers to admire.


After enjoying the waterfront, I walked towards the Amtrak station. The following week I came back to take the train to Sacramento, a trip which I’d highly recommend – it’s a very scenic ride and so much more relaxing than driving.


On my way back towards downtown, I walked by the Ellington (which I got a chance to tour the following week). I think the building is beautiful and a great addition to the neighborhood.

Though JLS seems like it hasn’t fully reached its potential, it felt much more active and vibrant than the last time I visited and I hope it will continue to move in this direction. Once the market opens and the units in the new buildings fill up, I think JLS might become an Oakland destination. Now if there was just a quick and easy way to get there by bus.

4 Responses to “Monday Morning Distractions – Jack London Square”

  1. Mike May 4, 2009 at 10:52 am #

    The Ellington is a nice building, but I’m not so sure about it’s “Las Vegas,” style lighting at night. I’m still on the fence whether it changes the skyline for the better or worse.

  2. Jennifer May 4, 2009 at 1:26 pm #

    The lack of transit to JLS is a real problem. I live on the other side of the produce district and can walk to Lake Merritt BART, but that’s too far for a JLS stop, as is 12th Street BART. I’d like to see a shuttle that circles from the 12th Street BART station down Broadway to JLS, goes over to Oak on 2nd or 3rd street, up to the Lake Merritt BART station and back over to Broadway. Kind of like a dolmus in Turkey that complements other forms of transit and but is more agile.

  3. Joanna May 4, 2009 at 4:10 pm #

    Mike, come on! I love the Vegas lighting! They shot a tv pilot in our building (Tower Lofts) eons ago and lit up the Allegro building since you could see it in the background. It looked incredible! I couldn’t believe how nice this building could look. 😉

    As for transit info, as part of the conditions of approval, the developer is supposed to add a shuttle at some point, although it seems it will be for office workers and not run at night. We’re hoping that changes.

    There are at least three and maybe four restaurants signed up for the old Spaghetti Factory/El Torrito spaces, so it’s just a matter of time before the Square starts to show signs of life. I do so hope that they can fill the Market with something other than office space…. For those of us that own down here, we NEED them to be successful!

  4. Georgia May 5, 2009 at 7:00 pm #

    The name of the succulent you pictured is a type of ice plant, I think. Beautiful but considered “weedy or invasive” ( &

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