In Nomine

In Nomine Berkeley


[Map of East SF Bay]

Descriptions of Areas

Downtown Berkeley
Downtown Berkeley is centered around the area between the intersections of University &Shattuck and South Berkeley. Berkeley isn't a particularly large city, so while there are a few high-rise buildings, it doesn't have the feel of a "big city" downtown. Still, you can find a number of office buildings, and a good collections of shops and restaurants. Traffic can get ugly around rush hour; the GM of the game has been known to refer to the area between UC Berkeley and North Oakland as the "great Berkeley/Oakland barrier" thanks to traffic in the late afternoon.

UC Berkeley
Although UCLA might dispute this, UC Berkeley is the most prestigous of the University of California system. It's a large university known for excellence in undergraduate and graduate education as well as in research. The campus itself alternates between buildings and open areas (such as the famous Sproul Plaza), and wooded areas overrun with eucalyptus trees. On interesting bit of trivia is that the Hayward Fault (predicted location of an upcoming Big One) runs right through the football stadium on campus. On the hills behind the campus is Lawrence Berkeley Lab, not to be confused with Lawnrence Livermore Lab (which is an hour's drive or so to the southeast).

South Berkeley
South Berkeley is a mix of residential areas and more industrial and business areas. Along the major streets, the businesses tend to be less oriented towards foot-traffic than is found around the University & Shattuck area.

North Berkeley
A very residential area with most of the "mid-range" housing in Berkeley. (Which is already extremely expsensive.) There are some schools, and a few nice shopping areas such as Solano avenue.

The Berkeley Hills
This is the more expensive residential area. Marin Ave. extends straight up the hills on a slope that was originally designed for cable cars such as are found in San Francisco. Along the top of the hills on the Berkeley side runs Grizzly Peak. If somebody lives up in the Berkeley Hills, either their family has owned the house for a long time, or they are reasonably welthy.

West Berkeley
West Berkeley is where the less expensive houses in Berkeley are found, as well as more industrial and warehouse areas. San Pablo is a long commercial district, much of which is not the sort of place you'd want to be after dark. The nature of the street varies along its length, with some parts of it almost quaint, and other parts where you'd go looking for paycheck cashing outfits and pawn shops.

Like North Berkeley, only more so. Albany is a relatively small municipaltiy, and it's very difficult to know when you've crossed from North Berkeley into Albany into El Cerrito. Albany is reputed to have the best public schools, and as such the price of small houses in Albany is even more exorbitant than in much of the rest of the east bay.

El Cerrito
Primarily a sprawling residential area, with the wealth of the residents ranging from fairly low (closer to Richmond) to very high (up in the hills). Of note is El Cerrito Plaza, a shopping area that was moribound through the 80's and the 90's but which very recently has seen a lot of investment and has been revitalized with a collection of yuppie-compliant big chain stores.


Some Highlights and Locations

Telegraph Avenue
The first several blocks of this street south of UC Berkeley are the primary place for counter-culture wannabes to hang out. Extending off from Sproul Plaza, the site of the Free Speech protests of the sixties, telegraph is a very eclectic shopping area. This one-way (to the North) street has a great collection of clothing stores, used and new bookstores (including Moe's and Cody's in the former and latter categories), record stores, and other shops. Additionally, the street is usually lined with street vendors selling bumper stickers, T-shirts, jewlrey, crystals and "new-agey" stuff... as well as tables protesting one or another social policy, including "legaize marajuana" tables featuring live potted pot plants. The street is always very full of pedestrians of all sorts, many of whom are young kids who like the scene, several others of whom are homeless. Sometimes on the corners you will find street musicians playing a guitar with their case open before them.

The major freeways bracket Berkeley, but do not go through it. Traffic is usually very busy in the Bay Area, and you can count on the freeways having a good number of cards on them most any "normal" time of the day, and traffic frequently slows to a crawl within a couple of hours of rush hour. The freeways are frequently an Ofanite's nightmare.

Public Transportation
BART, the sometimes-elevated, sometimes-subterrainian light rail system, is a great way to get in and out of San Francisco. There are two BART stations in El Cerrito, one in North Berkeley, one in downtown Berkeley (near University & Shattuck), and others in South Berkeley and Oakland. The buses in and around Berkeley are adequate, allowing you to get around the major streets.


Numbered Locations

1. Mrs. Benson's House
A tether to Zadkiel, on Grant St., just south of Rose St.

2. The Berkeley Rose Garden
A minor tether to Novalis.

3. Danny's Cafe
A tether to Haagenti.

4. People's Park
A tether to Malphas.