Prior to the mid-1800s, Oakland was largely a wild and undeveloped area. Much of what later would become known as Rockridge was also vacant land until the 1860s. That’s when a number of families from the east coast settled in the area. Among them was the Livermores, a New England family that had relocated west some two decades earlier and made their fortune developing lumber mills and dams around Folsom. With their wealth, the family scooped up large tracts of land in Rockridge, eventually establishing this area as a separate subdivision from Oakland.
Who gave the city its name? That credit goes to Horatio P. Livermore’s wife who, in a nod to an immense rock the family affectionately referred to as, ‘Big Rock,’ decided the area should be called Rockridge.
By the way, although most of Mrs. Livermore’s beloved Big Rock has been blasted away, you can still find portions of it near Glenbrook and Bowling Drives.
In a Word
Considered by many to be the model of transportation integration, the centrally located Rockridge BART station blends retail, commercial, and residential interests into one seamless, workable neighborhood. What’s more, with trains traveling from Rockridge to Montgomery Station in San Francisco roughly every twenty minutes, living here and working in the City makes for an easy commute.
Home to over 80 restaurants, cafes, retail stores, and Market Hall’s assortment of gourmet food vendors is College Avenue, Rockridge’s eclectic thoroughfare.
In a word, variety. While some areas of Rockridge consist of large homes that were built between the 1920s and the 1950s, others feature smaller bungalows and cottages. All of which means that, no matter your preference, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for here.