Living in Marina Bay

Parent Q&A

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  • Living in Marina Bay (Richmond)

    (2 replies)

    Saw a few postings that were more recent about living in Point Richmond, but wanted to know peoples experiences about Marina Bay. We have two young children and wanted to know what family life is like. I work part time so I do spend a lot of time at home and would love to take the kids out to walk along the water etc... but I also want to make sure it’s safe. Also, any mom groups out here?

    My mom lives in Marina Bay and loves it. Very safe, especially on the Bay Trail along the water. I see a lot of families at Marina Park, but not sure they live in the area.  My husband and I considered buying in the area, but the big drawback is the schools - although Marina Bay is safe and isolated from crime stats in Richmond, you're in the Richmond public schools, which are generally pretty poorly rated. 

    Hi! We moved to Marina Bay beginning of this year with our baby. I find it very safe and lovely to walk around. Our son loves walking along the bay and even just in our community where the landscaping is nice. There is also a public playground that has a lot of children playing there in afternoons and on weekends, located near the end of the Sunset Pointe development. Personally I haven’t had much luck connecting with other parents of babies, even though I posted on BPN and Nextdoor Marina Bay for play dates. The community here seems fairly quiet, and people seem to keep to themselves, in my experience. I am not aware of any mom groups. People have suggested joining PRAM (parent group also based in Point Richmond). Even though I didn’t get any bites from my play date offers, I highly suggest joining Nextdoor as well. People have good suggestions, and it has been helpful to know where popular swim classes/parks are. If you are interested in meeting other parents in the area, feel free to PM me! Our son is just over a year. Good luck with your move.

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Aug 2015

RE: Buying in Richmond

I lived in the marina bay neighborhood of Richmond for over 7 years. The area is quiet with park and bay trails. There's a police station nearby. There are people and family leisurely walk along the trails all the time. The area is fairly safe. The area is about 10 minutes drive to El Cerrito Bart, and about 10 minutes to casual carpool. There are condos, and single family homes within gated communities. Anon

April 2014

RE: Commute to San Rafael from Alameda?

For commuting to Berkeley and San Rafael, and for being near the water and walking trails, you can't beat Pt. Richmond (old charm) and Marina Bay (new and clean). The elementary and middle school zone (Washington and Portola) are fine. Not sure about Kennedy for high school though. When considering Washington and Portola, don't focus just on the test scores, they are really better schools than they look on paper. Local Mom

Looking at Marina Bay in Richmond

Feb 2004

We are house hunting in the bay area, and experiencing all the joys (ha ha) and frustrations of what our money can get us in a variety of neighborhoods. We have recently looked at a few townhomes in the Marina Bay area of Richmond. The Richmond address frightens us (with a new baby, and watching the news), but the townhomes were very nice, big, clean, newer, and in our price range (vs. a fixer-upper ''cottage'' aka ''box'' in Berkeley). I would love to hear anyones opinions, good and bad, re: this area and home buying. Thanks! hopeful homebuyer

We rented there for about a year, 1997-1998, before buying elsewhere. It was pleasant enough and we did look at the houses there & found them very impressive & well-priced. The main concern was that most of the land is landfill, which may not be the most stable in an earthquake and who knows what sort of stuff is in it, as part of this area was industrial. The land beside it, the old Zeneca property & UC Berkeley property is full of toxic material such as arsenic and mercury and is being cleaned. anon

Against my better judgement, my husband covinced me to look at ''New Homes'' in Marina Bay, Richmond. I thought he was nuts but the homes were in our price range. 10 years and 2 babies later we are still here, enjoying our little secret...that Marina bay is a little bit of paradise. We walk our dogs and kids along the bay path enjoying the sun as we watch fog move over Berkeley and El Cerrito. We are in a little sun belt. It can be a bit breezy but by inlarge we love it here. I have never had any problems with crime although a bike was stolen from down the street last summer. We were as were a few of our neighbors, able to transfer our children the the Kensington Hilltop school so that wasn't an issue. If you have questions about Marina Bay I'd be happy to answer them.

We lived in Marina Bay when our son was 1-3 years old and it was a very happy time for all of us. We would walk along the bay to a wonderful playground. The entire bay trail there is safe, low traffic, and offers some of the BEST views or the area. Some of the communities had pools but the weather there can be a bit chilly yearround due to the wind whipping off the bay. The commute is non-existant until you get to the Berkley exits off 80. There was a nice restaurant and small market in the community, either walking/biking distance from any of the subdivisions. The homes are newer and in need of very little TLC!!!!! Last but not least, PRAM -- Point Richmond Association of Moms. It is a great volunteer run organization based in Pt. Richmond and I would highly suggest contacting them for information on schools, playgroups and support!!!
Courtney who misses Marina Bay !

As frustrating as Bay Area housing prices are, I would still caution you against buying in Richmond, primarily due to the Chevron Refinery. It was not so long ago that this refinery dusted the whole community with a toxic catalyst waste. I think if you can afford to live elsewhere, you should. I suspect that babies are at higher risk of developing asthma and other ailments due to the chronic air emissions from the refinery. anon

I've lived in Marina Bay now for 14 years (yikes!!)and don't plan on moving until I retire. The crime level is minimal, the apartments get the brunt of it. (Richmond is a very big city and what get's on the news typically comes from very specific areas.) Many people use the Bay Trail and both Marina Bay and Vincent Park. There are many families with children living here. My family has made many friends through our time spent at Vincent Park.

The downside is the school district, although the local school is in Pt. Richmond and has a terrific parent community growing into the school (your baby may be the perfect age to benefit)and a new principal who has been very responsive to the community. The moms group PRAM is based in Pt.Richmond and is very active in the community and is becoming active in the school. Another downside is that home prices have climbed hugely in the last two years so there's a chance you'd be buying at a highpoint. On the other hand, where else are there affordable waterfront communities?
Good luck to you.

We have lived in Marina Bay for 7 years. The first 4 in what is now Archstone and the last 3 or so in one of the housing developments. We are a young couple with a toddler. When we decided to buy in the area, the reasons on the plus side were: the neighborhood is quiet and beautiful with the great bay trail (we do a lot of running and biking), the houses were new and much more affordable, that is, we felt like we were able to get more for our money. We are not handy folks and we didn't have enough money to invest to fix up a place, so getting a new home is a big plus for us. The downside for us was the school district. We decided that we were likely to sell within 5 years before our child will go to school. The landfill was also a concern. We did a little research to determine our particular house is on a 'less landfilled' portion of the complex we are in. The problems with the refineries have been minimal, in my opinion. We have not noticed any health effects or ongoing problems with air quality. We have loved living there. There are a lot of families with small children around us and it is just a very peaceful, pleasant and beautiful place to live. Day to day live is great, but you must be realistic about the downsides and figure out your priorities and how to deal with them. Good luck!
Happy Marina Bay Resident