Welcome to Martinez
The current county seat of Contra Costa County, Martinez is one of the oldest cities in the state. Like most cities in the eastern side of the Bay Area, the history of Martinez is dominated by the gold trade and by the waterways of the California Delta. However, unlike many cities in the region, Martinez managed to grow and develop with the passage of time, maintaining regional relevance. Modern Martinez maintains its place in the county through large scale modernization and an Intermodal Transit Facility.
Lay of the Land
Located along the shores of the Carquinez Strait in central Contra Costa County, Martinez is one of the larger locations in that portion of the county, with a total population of 37,165. The city of Benicia sits across the strait, while Concord lies to the south. Additionally, the city is surrounded by a variety of open space preserves and fiercely independent unincorporated communities. The city is also lined with a variety of creeks and small waterways which empty into the Carquinez Strait. The estimated median household income for the city is $83,475 while the estimated average home value is $$426,514.
Ground transportation for Martinez is accomplished via State Route 4. Route 4 runs through the city westward towards Hercules and east through the city of Stockton before eventually ending near the Nevada border. Interstate 680 crosses the Benicia-Martinez Bridge in the north before continuing on to Sacramento. It also connects with San Jose in the south.
Public transportation is a key part of Martinez and is facilitated by the Intermodal Transit Center. The center serves as a hub for most of the regional and interregional transit options. This includes several Amtrak lines as well as Bay Area Rapid Transit lines. It also serves to unify the fractured county services that operate within the area.
County Connections which serves the central portion of the county, Tri Delta Transit which covers the eastern portion of the county, and WestCAT which provides transit coverage to the west section of Contra Costa County, all have transit lines which overlap in Martinez. Routing through Martinez allows travelers to access virtually any location in Contra Costa County or any of the key locations within the immediate Bay Area.
Downtown Martinez features a wide range of historic locations, including many original storefronts and surrounding homes which date back over 125 years. However, portions of the downtown region have also been fully renovated in order to reflect the city’s modernization efforts. The modernized sections contain a wide range of specialty shops as well as a diverse collection of local and national eateries. The shopping and dining makes downtown the cultural and social hub of the city.
Downtown also serves as the focal point for a wide range of community sponsored events and activities. This includes mundane activities such as the local farmers market and a variety of downtown beautification projects. However, it is also the site of a wide range of seasonal gatherings and holiday celebrations. Finally, the city also hosts a wide range of wine themed activities and celebrations of local breweries.
The city of Martinez also supports an extensive collection of parks and outdoor recreation facilities. In total, the city is home to 17 parks with a variety of recreational facilities and amenities. The city is also home to 16 ball-fields, various tennis courts, basketball courts, a general use community center, and a dedicated senior center.
Finally, the city is also connected to, or shares a border with, several regional parks. This includes the Martinez Regional Shoreline and the Waterbird Regional Preserve. Both locations are managed by the East Bay Regional Park District and offer guests access to a wide range of amenities, including hiking trails, biking trails, equestrian trails, aquatic activities, and a diverse array of habitats supporting a wide range of plant and animal species.