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San Lorenzo sits 12 miles south of Oakland on the eastern edge of the San Francisco Bay. The neighborhood, primarily comprised of several thousand single-family homes bordered by a small commercial district, holds claim to fame for being the first planned housing community built in the nation. Residents enjoy wildlife and recreation in the marshes along the waterfront as well as easy access to larger surrounding cities like San Leandro, Hayward and Fremont.


Rent Trends

As of October 2017, the average apartment rent in San Lorenzo, CA is $1,598 for one bedroom, $1,893 for two bedrooms, and $2,312 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in San Lorenzo has increased by 2.8% in the past year.

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61 Walk Score® Somewhat Walkable
37 Transit Score® Some Transit
0 Bike Score® Somewhat Bikeable



American, Mexican and Indian cuisines dominate the San Lorenzo restaurants, but a variety of other eateries abound. Many locals consider R & D Cafe the best place to go for Vietnamese food. Enjoy the pho, a soup made with noodles, meat and broth, paired with the spring rolls and fresh papaya salad. The low prices and large portions make it a great place to dine on a budget.

Start the morning off right by stopping at Frodo Joe's Coffee and Tea on Hesperian Boulevard for a strawberry and banana crepe with raspberry drizzle. The menu also features a number of savory crepes, such as the chicken cashew crepe with feta cheese and pesto sauce. To satisfy a burger craving, locals head over to Sam's Super Burgers. The staff makes burgers the old-fashioned way, with all the fixings. Pair your burger with a side of chili cheese fries and grab a milkshake to finish off the meal. With multiple drive-through lanes and a walk-up window for ordering, service is always speedy, making the restaurant popular among those looking for a quick bite to eat.

Most residents seeking entertainment at night travel the short distance to one of the several neighboring cities, including San Francisco, Oakland and Union City. Nightlife in San Lorenzo consists predominately of a few dive bars. Patrons visit Usher Inn to enjoy cheap drinks while playing a game of pool. The many TV screens around the wall allow people to have a night out without missing the game.


The area encompassing San Lorenzo got its first population boom during the Gold Rush, when settlers found the fertile soils and warm climate ideal for agriculture. Railroads continued to bring settlers to the area throughout the turn of the 20th century. The ports around the bay enlarged and operated continuously during World War II, bringing in an influx of wartime workers. To accommodate these new residents, the farmland was converted into housing developments. The country's first planned community, San Lorenzo Village, was constructed in 1944 using new pre-cutting techniques known as the "California method." This method allowed for the rapid construction of homes and became a model for future home construction in the United States.

This history is chronicled at the Center for History and Culture in Hayward. Visitors can also tour the San Lorenzo Pioneer Cemetery to see where the earliest residents are buried.


The AC Transit operates several bus lines that run throughout San Lorenzo, making it an accessible mode of transportation. However, most prefer a personal vehicle for trips around town. People can take advantage of the many bike lanes and crosswalks to bike and walk around the neighborhood. Drivers will find free and ample parking near most businesses. A few taxi companies serve the area, but you will need to call to arrange a ride. Uber does not operate in San Lorenzo.

Interstate 880 runs through San Lorenzo, making it easy to access nearby areas. Bay Area Rapid Transit's light rail system is a popular mode of public transportation that provides rides to nearby major cities including Oakland and San Francisco.


The cost of living is 5 percent lower in San Lorenzo than in Oakland, and the average rent costs $1,230. Gas prices remain around 10 to 20 percent higher than the national average, and a pint of beer costs around $5. Getting from San Lorenzo to Oakland using the AC Transit bus costs $2.10, and a trip by BART train from nearby San Leandro station to downtown Oakland costs $2.40.


Few shopping opportunities exist within San Lorenzo, but those that do are mostly clustered along Hesperian Boulevard. While high-end stores will be difficult to come by, more shopping opportunities can be found in San Leandro, which has a shopping mall called the Bayfair Center.

Several smoke shops operate in San Lorenzo. People frequent Smoker Friendly to browse the selection of smoke accessories and unique glass pipes. Vaping enthusiasts stop by to peruse the selection of vaporizers and juices. A large selection of hand-rolled cigars draws in customers as well.

Pick up your favorite comic book at Miryam & Jane's The Comic Shop, where books line the walls from ceiling to floor. The extensive collection of back issues makes the store popular among super hero enthusiasts. You can also find apparel, posters, and games based on your favorite comic books.

Many people shop for groceries at Lucky's, the major supermarket in the area. Several ethnic grocery stores also operate in the area, such as Pacific Ranch Supermarket, which specializes in Asian food items.


San Lorenzo has several parks located throughout the neighborhood. San Lorenzo Community Park is known for the ponds with water features and the numerous ducks and geese that frequent the area. Children enjoy playing on the soccer field and playground, and many people also walk their dogs in the park. Free admission is an added bonus.

For more recreational opportunities, check out Mervin Morris Park, which has several tennis courts and a skate park. Families enjoy the park for the playgrounds, picnic tables and barbecue pits. Since the adjacent high school uses the facilities for practices, many people avoid the park on school day afternoons as it can get quite congested.

Wildlife enthusiasts frequent Hayward Regional Shoreline, which runs along the edge of the bay and encompasses hundreds of acres of wetlands. Bird watchers explore the area searching for a glimpse of some of the endangered birds that stop over in the marshes. With more than 5 miles of trails, the park also attracts many joggers and walkers. On clear days you can even get a glimpse of Oakland and the San Francisco skyline. The park provides plenty of parking and permits dogs only in certain areas of the park.


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Kent Gardens
16450 Kent Ave, San Lorenzo, CA 94580
No Availability 2 wks

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