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Union City

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Union City [6] is a small city (population ~74,000) located in the southern part of the East Bay portion of the San Francisco Bay Area region of California. It is bordered to the north by the city of Hayward and to the south by the city of Fremont. It is part of the Tri-Cities area, which consists of Union City, Fremont, and Newark.


When California began to experience incredible growth in the 1950s, Southern Alameda County developed quickly and the city of Hayward began to eye the townships to its south for potential annexation. To preclude such an event, a citizen's committee petitioned for incorporation; and on January 13, 1959, the City of Union City came into being, binding together the four townships of Union City/New Haven/Alvarado/Decoto. Tom Kitayama, who served on the citizen's committee, became its first mayor. He was the first Japanese-American to hold public office in California, just 14 years after the end of World War II and the internment of Japanese-Americans.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

From Oakland and Berkeley, take I-880 south. From San Jose, take I-880 north. From San Francisco and the peninsula, take US-101 to either the San Mateo Bridge (US-92) or preferably the Dumbarton Bridge (SR-84).

By public transportation[edit]

  • AC Transit[7] buses bring you in from Contra Costa county and the rest of Alameda county.
  • BART[8] trains bring you to the renovated (completed 2012) Union City BART Station from Fremont to the south; from Hayward, San Leandro, Oakland and Richmond to the north; as well as San Francisco to the west. With the completion of the Phase 1 Intermodal area, connecting bus stops (AC Transit, Dumbarton Express, and Union City Transit) have been relocated on the west side of the BART Station[9]. The next phase will open a new east access to the BART Station from the future transit village.
  • Dumbarton Express[10] buses bring you in from Palo Alto via Dumbarton Bridge.

Get around[edit]

Cycling, walking, and taking public transportation are all alternatives to driving, although traffic isn't bad relatively speaking and free parking is plentiful.

  • Union City Transit [11] operates four bus routes, which are coordinated with BART trains, AC Transit, and the Dumbarton Express to areas outside the city. Main transfer points are at the Union City BART Station and the Union Landing transit facility. Fares are $1.75 adults, $1 youth, $0.75 seniors.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Bay Area Flight 93 Memorial, Alvarado-Niles and Dyer (in Sugar Mill Landing Park), [1]. The first memorial completed in the United States to honor the passengers and crew of United Airlines Flight 93, which was bound for San Francisco, but was hijacked and crashed in rural Pennsylvania on September 11, 2001.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

Cycle, run, or walk your dog on the Alameda Creek Trail which extends from the hills to the bay. One side of the trail is paved and the other is mostly unpaved.

  • Dry Creek/Pioneer Regional Park. Dry Creek Cottage was a popular summer home of Edith, Mildred, and Jeanette Meyers, three sisters of Alameda who were very active locally during the early and mid 1900s. The restored garden and cottage is accessible by the Meyer trail at the end of Tamarack Dr off Mission Blvd, which also provide access to hiking trails at the south end of Dry Creek Regional Park. Dry Creek/Pioneer is adjacent to Garin Regional Park and shares a visitor center in Hayward.  edit
  • Century 25 Union City, 32100 Union Landing Blvd (I-880 and Alvarado-Niles), (800) 326-3264 ext. 936, [2]. Large multiplex movie theater, one of the largest in Northern California, is located in the Union Landing shopping center.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Daiso Japan, 1785 Decoto Blvd (at Alvarado-Niles, In El Mercado Shopping Center), (510) 477-9441. The largest Daiso Japan store in the United States is found right here in Union City. Get your fill of a large variety of Japanese merchandise for only $1.50. All sales are final.  edit
  • Union Landing Shopping Center, Union Landing Blvd (bounded by I-880, Alvarado-Niles, Whipple, and Dyer), [3]. Large car-oriented 105-acre shopping center containing two motels, diverse retail shops, "big box" stores, and entertainment. A map of the shopping center is hard to find; look here[4] for one. The Union Landing Transit Center, a major transfer point for the Union City Transit, is conveniently located within the shopping center, in between Century 25 and Lowes.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Mayflower Restaurant, 34348 Alvarado Niles Road, (510) 489-8386 (in the El Mercado Shopping Center near Decoto Road). Very popular Chinese restaurant. Avoid the weekend lunch hour, when it is packed. Come early (before 11:30am) during the weekdays to experience probably the best dim sum in the Tri-cities. Also avoid Chinese New Year and the few weeks following.
  • There is a variety of different (fast food) restaurants inside Union Landing Shopping Center.

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Paddy's Coffee House, 3900 Smith St, [5]. 6AM-11PM. Nice chill neighborhood spot with FREE WiFi. $.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Crowne Plaza Hotel, 32083 Alvarado-Niles Road, (510) 489-2200, [12], east of I-880.
  • Holiday Inn Express, 31140 Alvarado-Niles Rd, (510) 475-0600, [13], west of I-880, in the Union Landing Shopping Center.

Get out[edit]

Routes through Union City
OaklandHayward  N noframe S  NewarkSan Jose

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