Living in Martinez and commuting to San Rafael- Crazy???

Hi there, 

My hubby and I are on the hunt for a house and try as we might we can't make it happen in the areas we want! We have started to consider Martinez because of its affordable houses and very highly rated schools. Here is the kicker, I work in San Rafael, is the commute really just downright awful? I'm sure that's a dumb question, because isn't it all terrible, but I just don't know anything about commuting that direction! My current commute from Oakland to San Rafael is 40-60 minutes each way, is this commute similar?

We have considered every town in that direction between Richmond and Martinez, but schools are the most important thing on our list so it seems like Martinez is the best option. We also would like to be semi near BART for when my hubby needs to commute to the city. 

Right now I am 100& work from home because of the pandemic and hope it stays that way but alas I don't know if it will. 

Any advice is appreciated. 

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I work in Martinez and commute from El Cerrito, which is counter commute and takes me about 25 minutes. Martinez to SR is in the commute direction and I would estimate 60 minutes one way, if there is not an accident on the bridge. Personally that is too much commute for me but YMMV. I also wanted to note that many of my coworkers have kids in the public schools in Martinez Unified and it sounds like a mixed bag (honestly, just like every other public school system). My family considered moving to Martinez in the last year so I could be closer to work but decided that based on the things we look for in a school, MUSD wasn't particularly different (better or worse) than WCCUSD, our home district (again, a mixed bag, I am not trying to denigrate it). High school football is a very big deal at Alhambra High School (the main high school in Martinez), so maybe that's a draw or a detraction for you.

Part of Martinez feeds to Mount Diablo Unified School District, which was of more interest to us because the specific schools that Martinez residents attend are relatively higher rated, but my partner ending up squashing that because that district is close to insolvent. (I would have done it, though, just goes to show you that different criteria in schools are important to different people.) Also that part of town is even further from the freeway, thus making an even longer commute for you.

Commute will be similar if not slightly worse.  You still have to cross the same bridge.  But then you'll have to deal with getting from Hwy 4 to 80 and then over to 580.  It's Richmond Parkway or Carlson. You'll either have lots of signals and some traffic or some traffic and lots of signals.  You might want to take a look at what the Martinez to El Cerrito BART trip would be like.  IDK, but I suspect it's not that great.  Or would he go to Concord?  That part of Hwy 4 gets really bad.  

Martinez is a nice town with nice parks/open spaces.  But it also has the court house, jail and refineries.

Hope this helps - Good luck