Oakland, the other city by the bay, is experiencing a renaissance. In this, the city’s 165th anniversary year, Oakland is a cosmopolitan and multicultural city renowned for its trendy restaurants, museums, and arts scene. It’s also the home of the reigning NBA champion Golden State Warriors, arguably the greatest pro team in basketball history.
The accolades have come rolling in for Oakland in recent years. In 2012, it was called the top city in North America to visit. A year later, the website movoto.com listed Oakland at No. 1 on its list of the most exciting cities in America.
Oakland has earned its status as a happening place. Award-winning eateries — like Oliveto Café and Restaurant and Cholita Linda — can be found throughout the city. And the arts scene has been exploding for years: According to one source, Oakland has more artists per capita than any other major city in America. Since 2006, the Oakland Art Murmur has been a popular destination on the first Friday of every month.
With more and more attractions bringing people in, Oakland has naturally begun to experience a population influx. The number of residents during the 2010 census was listed at 390,000, but it’s believed that the population has inched up to approximately 420,000 today — the highest it’s been since Oakland was incorporated in 1852.
“Oakland is going through a lot of rebirth,” says Scotty Cranston, a salesman for Medallion Industries who chose MI Windows for a new apartment building in the city. “It’s almost becoming a whole new town. They are building a lot of apartments, a lot of new restaurants, a lot of development. It’s good to see.”
It’s true: Various construction projects have been undertaken throughout Oakland. One such project in the Temescal neighborhood of North Oakland is the Idora Apartments, which were finished earlier this year.
The Idora is a five-story building that offers 33 residential units. All the windows on the Idora were fabricated by MI Windows.
“The decision to go with MI had a lot to do with the quality and pricing of the windows,” Cranston says. “It’s a good product.”
Cranston especially liked the energy efficiency of the EnergyCore 150 single-hung windows.
“We have (California’s) Title 24, which requires that we meet certain energy requirements,” he says, “and the EC150 is able to meet those requirements.”
Indeed, the EC150 single-hung is a vinyl window that features dual-pane glass and a warm-edge spacer system, giving it unparalleled energy efficiency and performance. Additional features include an internal sloped weep system, tri-fin weatherstripping, and integral lift rails. It should come as no surprise that the EC150 is one of MI’s top-selling windows.
The Idora also features MI’s EnergyCore 190 sliding-glass door. Like the EC150 single-hung, the EC190 sliding-glass door boasts superior thermal performance thanks to its warm-edge spacer system. The EC190 door panels are made from MikronWood®, a solid-core material that combines the beauty of wood with the durability and low-maintenance advantages of a composite material. This unique door features tall bottom rails, wide stiles, and a true-sloped sill to provide the ultimate combination of style and performance.
David DeMoss, vice president of Mill Valley-based St. Regis Properties, which owns the Idora Apartments, says that MI Windows filled another need for this property. The Temescal neighborhood is undergoing a commercial and residential boom similar to the rest of the city. Busy streets mean lots of noise, something residents don’t want to hear once they’re inside their homes. Available with an STC rating as high as 41, the EC150 features some of the best sound ratings of any vinyl window available today.
“This is a fairly well-trafficked urban area,” DeMoss says. “We wanted to have some noise reduction; that was important to us.”
One reason Temescal is so heavily trafficked is that it offers easy access to so many places in the Bay area.
“It’s on the Oakland and Berkeley border, so it provides convenience to Berkeley as well as downtown Oakland,” DeMoss says. “It’s also very approximate to freeway access to get into San Francisco, so that’s why a lot of people like it — within two minutes you can be on the highway.”
All of which makes the Idora Apartments a highly desired residential property — and just one more reason why Oakland is a city on the rise “Everyone wonders what took so long,” DeMoss says. “Oakland has always been a little bit looked over. But given what’s going on in San Francisco, and how popular and how much business and employee growth San Francisco has created, there’s been spillover of that into Oakland. Downtown San Francisco is very accessible from Oakland. And historically, Oakland’s downtown core has been more dominated by government business. But now you’re starting to see more private business move into downtown Oakland, which is driving the residential and employee growth.”