Welcome to Brisbane
One of the smaller cities in San Mateo County, Brisbane is often overshadowed by its larger neighbors, especially San Francisco with which it shares a border. However, that doesn’t stop the city from being a typical Bay Area location. A developing technological and industrial complex competes with rolling hills and oak groves to create a picture perfect modern urban environment.
Lay of the Land
Brisbane is located on the western edge of Bay on the southernmost edge of San Francisco. The city also runs extensively along the eastern edge of San Bruno Mountain State Park. The difference in elevation between the western and eastern edges of the town ensure that residents enjoy their fair share of foggy mornings and panoramic sunsets. Though the city exists as a separate entity, it is little more than a San Francisco suburb when it comes to size (20 square miles) and population (4,443). While the city is currently expanding economically, it still enjoys median household incomes ($81,320) and home values ($624,792) that are within the average range for the region and the state.
Car travel into and out of Brisbane is primarily accomplished via U.S. Route 101 which clips the eastern edge of the city before traversing north or south across most of the surrounding area. Bayshore Boulevard also provides access from Brisbane into San Francisco and South San Francisco. Public transportation stations within the city itself are limited to SamTrans bus stations. However, SamTrans connects the city to a variety of nearby stations. These include Bay Area Rapid Transit Services, CalTrain commuter stations, and stations connecting to San Mateo County Transit services.
Brisbane has benefited tremendously from its proximity to San Francisco and the surrounding larger urban centers. While the city is essentially an extension of its larger neighbors when it comes to geographic benefits, its independent status allows it offer several economic and developmental benefits not available in the larger, more developed areas. This had led to the migration of numerous commercial, industrial, and technological ventures from areas such as San Francisco into the city of Brisbane.
Sierra Point is a small peninsula that extends out from the city into the nearby Bay. It is also the home of a dominant office park that houses most of the significant technology and industrial organizations within the area. The economic activity within the Sierra Point complex accounts for a functional doubling of the city’s population during normal work hours. In addition to the smaller offices located in the area, it is also home to several larger office buildings, including the regionally recognizable Dakin Building.
While not technically part of the city, San Bruno Mountain State Park shares an extensive border with Brisbane and rises majestically above the city. The park encompasses the northern reaches of the Santa Cruz range and is largely undeveloped wilderness, lacking many of the extensive facilities common to other state parks. Most of the park’s visitors are concerned with hiking trails and sightseeing. In addition to serving as a home for numerous indigenous plant and animal species, the higher elevation sections of the park offer an unmatched view of the Bay and surrounding area.
Finally, Brisbane offers residents a surprising number of community services and organized activities for a city of its size. This includes a full range of traditional sports leagues and organizations based on outdoor activities such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. It also includes several parental organizations designed to assist residents with early childhood education and development. The most unique group is the Arkansas Division of the Sea Cadets. The Sea Cadets is a program operated in conjunction with the United States Navy. They provide members of the local youth community with the opportunity to drill and work with members of the United States Navy and other sea based services.