|City of San Rafael|
Location of San Rafael, California
|Incorporated||February 18, 1874|
|Named for||Archangel Raphael|
|• Type||Council-manager with directly elected mayor|
|• Mayor||Gary O. Phillips|
|• City Manager||Jim Schutz|
|• Supervisor||District 1: Damon Connolly|
|• State Legislators|| Sen. Mike McGuire (D) |
Asm. Marc Levine (D)
|• U. S. Rep.||Jared Huffman (D)|
|• Total||22.52 sq mi (58.32 km2)|
|• Land||16.57 sq mi (42.91 km2)|
|• Water||5.95 sq mi (15.41 km2) 26.55%|
|Elevation||43 ft (13 m)|
|• Density||3,558.52/sq mi (1,373.95/km2)|
|• Demonym||San Rafaelino|
|Time zone||UTC-8 (PST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-7 (PDT)|
|GNIS feature IDs||1659589, 2411804|
San Rafael ( /
Raphael is an archangel responsible for healing in the traditions of most Abrahamic religions. Not all branches of these religions consider the identification of Raphael to be canonical.
A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, China, Romania, Taiwan and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, and historically in Jamaica.
Marin County is a county located in the San Francisco Bay Area of the U.S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 252,409. Its county seat is San Rafael. Marin County is included in the San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco.
What is now San Rafael was once the site of several Coast Miwok villages: Awani-wi, near downtown San Rafael, Ewu, near Terra Linda and Shotomko-cha, in Marinwood.Mission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in what is now downtown San Rafael as the 20th Spanish mission in the colonial Mexican province of Alta California by three priests—Father Narciso Durán from Mission San José, Father Abella from Mission San Francisco de Asís, Father Luis Gíl y Taboada from La Iglesia de Nuestra Señora Reina de los Angeles—on Dec. 14, 1817, four years before Mexico gained independence from Spain. Mission San Rafael Arcángel was located a donkey's day walk to the mission below it. The mission and the city are named after the Archangel Raphael, the Angel of Healing.
The Coast Miwok are an indigenous people that was the second largest group of Miwok people. The Coast Miwok inhabited the general area of modern Marin County and southern Sonoma County in Northern California, from the Golden Gate north to Duncans Point and eastward to Sonoma Creek. The Coast Miwok included the Bodega Bay Miwok, from authenticated Miwok villages around Bodega Bay, and the Marin Miwok.
Terra Linda is a former unincorporated community incorporated in San Rafael in Marin County, California. It lies at an elevation of 171 feet.
Mission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in 1817 as a medical asistencia ("sub-mission") of Mission San Francisco de Asís. It was a hospital to treat sick Native Americans, making it Alta California's first sanitarium. The weather was much better than in San Francisco, which helped the ill get better. It was not intended to be a stand-alone mission, but nevertheless grew and prospered and was granted full mission status on October 19, 1822.
The mission was originally planned as a hospital site for Central Valley American Indians who had become ill at the cold San Francisco Mission Dolores. Father Luis Gil, who spoke several Native American languages, was put in charge of the facility. In part because of its ideal weather, San Rafael was later upgraded to full mission status in 1822. The mission had 300 converts within its first year, and 1,140 converts by 1828. The Mexican government took over the California missions in 1834, and Mission San Rafael was abandoned in 1844, eventually falling into ruin. The current mission was built in 1949 in the style of the original, but faces at right angles to the alignment of the original.
The Central Valley is a flat valley that dominates the geographical center of the U.S. state of California. It is 40 to 60 miles wide and stretches approximately 450 miles (720 km) from north-northwest to south-southeast, inland from and parallel to the Pacific Ocean coast. It covers approximately 18,000 square miles (47,000 km2), about 11% of California's total land area. The valley is bounded by the Sierra Nevada to the east and the Coast Ranges to the west.
San Francisco, officially the City and County of San Francisco, is the cultural, commercial, and financial center of Northern California. San Francisco is the 13th-most populous city in the United States, and the fourth-most populous in California, with 884,363 residents as of 2017. It covers an area of about 46.89 square miles (121.4 km2), mostly at the north end of the San Francisco Peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area, making it the second-most densely populated large US city, and the fifth-most densely populated U.S. county, behind only four of the five New York City boroughs. San Francisco is also part of the fifth-most populous primary statistical area in the United States, the San Jose–San Francisco–Oakland, CA Combined Statistical Area.
The San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad reached San Rafael in 1879 and was linked to the national rail network in 1888. The United States Navy operated a San Pablo Bay degaussing range from San Rafael through World War II.
San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad (SF&NP) provided the first extensive standard gauge rail service to Sonoma County and became the southern end of the regional Northwestern Pacific Railroad. Although first conceived of by Asbury Harpending, who had even obtained many of the right of ways, the SF & NP was bought and subsequently constructed by Peter Donahue, who drove the first spike on August 30, 1869.
The United States Navy (USN) is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. It is the largest and most capable navy in the world, with the highest combined battle fleet tonnage and the world's largest aircraft carrier fleet, with eleven in service, and two new carriers under construction. With 319,421 personnel on active duty and 99,616 in the Ready Reserve, the Navy is the third largest of the service branches. It has 282 deployable combat vessels and more than 3,700 operational aircraft as of March 2018, making it the second largest and second most powerful air force in the world.
Degaussing is the process of decreasing or eliminating a remnant magnetic field. It is named after the gauss, a unit of magnetism, which in turn was named after Carl Friedrich Gauss. Due to magnetic hysteresis, it is generally not possible to reduce a magnetic field completely to zero, so degaussing typically induces a very small "known" field referred to as bias. Degaussing was originally applied to reduce ships' magnetic signatures during World War II. Degaussing is also used to reduce magnetic fields in cathode ray tube monitors and to destroy data held on magnetic storage.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 22.4 square miles (58 km2). 16.5 square miles (43 km2) of it is land and 6.0 square miles (16 km2) of it (26.55%) is water. South of the county is San Francisco.
The United States Census Bureau is a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American people and economy. The Census Bureau is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce and its director is appointed by the President of the United States.
Notable landmarks include:
The Marin County Civic Center, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is located in San Rafael, California, United States. Groundbreaking for the Civic Center Administration Building took place in 1960, after Wright's death and under the watch of Wright's protégé, Aaron Green, and was completed in 1962. The Hall of Justice was begun in 1966 and completed in 1969. Veterans Memorial Auditorium opened in 1971, and the Exhibit Hall opened in 1976.
Frank Lloyd Wright was an American architect, interior designer, writer, and educator, who designed more than 1,000 structures, 532 of which were completed. Wright believed in designing structures that were in harmony with humanity and its environment, a philosophy he called organic architecture. This philosophy was best exemplified by Fallingwater (1935), which has been called "the best all-time work of American architecture". His creative period spanned more than 70 years.
China Camp State Park is a state park of California, United States, surrounding a historic Chinese American shrimp-fishing village and a salt marsh. The park is located in San Rafael, California, on the shore of San Pablo Bay. It is known for its hiking and mountain biking trails, scenic views, and open spaces. The 1,514-acre (613 ha) park was established in 1976. A 75-acre (30 ha) district, including the shrimping village and a prehistoric shell midden, were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979 for having state-level significance in archaeology, architecture, commerce, settlement, and social history.
There are several public parks in the city.
The San Rafael shoreline has been historically filled to a considerable extent to accommodate land development, with underlying bay mud (saturated clayed silt) of up to 90 feet (27 m) in thickness. At certain locations such as Murphys Point, the sandstone or shale rock outcrops through the mud.
San Rafael has a wide diversity of natural habitats from forests at the higher elevations to marshland and estuarine settings. Its marshes are home to the endangered species Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse. There are also riparian areas including the San Rafael Creek and Miller Creek corridors.
San Rafael has a Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csb), with mild winter lows seldom reaching the freezing mark. The National Weather Service reports that August is usually the warmest month with a high of 80.1 °F or 26.7 °C and a low of 55.0 °F or 12.8 °C. December, the coldest month, has an average high of 55.1 °F or 12.8 °C and an average low of 41.0 °F or 5.0 °C. The highest temperature on record is 110 °F (43.3 °C), recorded in June 1961. The highest temperature in recent years, 108 °F (42.2 °C), occurred on July 23, 2006. The record lowest temperature was 20 °F (−6.7 °C) on December 22, 1990. There are an average of 17.9 afternoons annually with a high of 90 °F or 32.2 °C or more and 1.2 afternoons with a high of 100 °F or 37.8 °C or more. Freezing temperatures (32° or below) occur on an average of 3.6 mornings.
Total annual precipitation averages 32.16 inches or 816.9 millimetres, with an average of 64.3 days with measurable rain. The rainy season is from November to early April: rain is rare outside of this period and it is normal to receive no rain in June, July, August, and September. The wettest “rain year” was from July 1994 to June 1995 with 61.45 inches (1,560.8 mm) and the driest from July 1975 to June 1976 with 13.62 inches (345.9 mm). The most rain in one month was 24.11 inches (612.4 mm) in January 1995, and the heaviest 24-hour rainfall was 8.74 inches (222.0 mm) on December 11, 1995. A trace of snow was recorded on January 30, 1976.
|Climate data for San Rafael, California (1981–2010 normals)|
|Average high °F (°C)||55|
|Average low °F (°C)||42|
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||6.85|
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)||12.2||10.9||9.7||5.7||3.4||1.1||0||.1||1.0||3.4||6.4||10.4||64.3|
|U.S. Decennial Census|
The 2010 United States Censusreported that the city of San Rafael had a population of 57,713. This figure does not, however, include portions of the Santa Venetia and Lucas Valley-Marinwood CDPs, nor various other unincorporated areas, all of which have San Rafael postal addresses; in total, according to the 2010 Census, there are 70,197 residents of San Rafael postal addresses (ZIP codes 94901 and 94903).
The following statistics refer to the incorporated limits of San Rafael only. The population density was 2,573.9 people per square mile (993.8/km²). The racial makeup of San Rafael was 40,734 (70.6%) White, 1,154 (2.0%) African American, 709 (1.2%) Native American, 3,513 (6.1%) Asian, 126 (0.2%) Pacific Islander, 8,513 (14.8%) from other races, and 2,964 (5.1%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 17,302 persons (30.0%).
The Census reported that 55,594 people (96.3% of the population) lived in households, 1,314 (2.3%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 805 (1.4%) were institutionalized.
There were 22,764 households, out of which 6,358 (27.9%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 9,845 (43.2%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 2,004 (8.8%) had a female householder with no husband present, 1,133 (5.0%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 1,450 (6.4%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 301 (1.3%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 7,434 households (32.7%) were made up of individuals and 2,954 (13.0%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44. There were 12,982 families (57.0% of all households); the average family size was 3.02.
The population was spread out with 11,132 people (19.3%) under the age of 18, 4,956 people (8.6%) aged 18 to 24, 16,915 people (29.3%) aged 25 to 44, 15,574 people (27.0%) aged 45 to 64, and 9,136 people (15.8%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40.2 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.1 males.
There were 24,011 housing units at an average density of 1,070.9 per square mile (413.5/km²), of which 11,909 (52.3%) were owner-occupied, and 10,855 (47.7%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.6%; the rental vacancy rate was 5.1%. 27,554 people (47.7% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 28,040 people (48.6%) lived in rental housing units.
As of the censusof 2000, there were 56,063 people, 22,371 households, and 12,773 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,378.9 inhabitants per square mile (1,304.8/km²). There were 22,948 housing units at an average density of 1,383.1 per square mile (534.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city in 2010 was 59.0% non-Hispanic White, 1.8% non-Hispanic African American, 0.2% Native American, 6.0% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 0.3% from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. 30.0% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 22,371 households out of which 25.8% had children under the age of 18, 44.3% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.9% were non-families. 32.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.9% have someone living alone who is 65 or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.99. The age distribution is as follows: 19.5% under the age of 18, 8.1% from 18 to 24, 33.3% from 25 to 44, 24.8% from 45 to 64, and 14.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.7 males.
The reported median income for a household in the city was $60,994; the median reported income for a family was $74,398 (these figures had risen to $67,789 and $85,459 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males reported a median income of $50,650 versus $39,912 for females. The reported per capita income for the city was $35,762. About 5.6% of families and 10.2% of the population reported incomes below the poverty line, including 11.7% of those under age 18 and 5.0% of those age 65 or over.
San Rafael is a stronghold of the Democratic Party. As of October 22, 2012, there were 29,638 registered voters in San Rafael, of which 16,357 (55.2%) were Democrats, 5,332 (18.0%) were Republicans, and 6,676 (22.5%) declined to state a political party.
San Rafael is governed by a city council with five members, elected at-large for four-year terms. The current members are:
In the United States House of Representatives, San Rafael is in California's 2nd congressional district , represented by Democrat Jared Huffman. From 2008 to 2012, Huffman represented Marin County in the California State Assembly.
In the California State Legislature, San Rafael is in:
Autodesk, In Defense of Animals, Westamerica Bank, and GIS Data Resourcesare among the companies headquartered in San Rafael.
After the arrival of George Lucas in San Rafael in 1970 to film the movie THX 1138 , the city became a center for the entertainment industry, particularly the high-tech elements of the business. Lucasfilm was founded by George Lucas in 1971, and is best known for the global hit movie series Star Wars and also for Indiana Jones . Some of the company's operations were moved to San Francisco in 2005. Portions of the Universal movie production American Graffiti were filmed in downtown San Rafael under George Lucas's direction, and portions of THX 1138 were shot at the Marin County Civic Center in San Rafael. Much of the movie Gattaca , starring Ethan Hawke, was also shot in the Marin County Civic Center. Industrial Light & Magic was founded in 1975 by Lucas to do special effects for his films and those of other filmmakers. The new-age music program Hearts of Space has been headquartered in San Rafael since 2004.
Largely because of the presence of LucasFilm, San Rafael started to attract video game developers, with several major studios located in the city. However, in recent years most of the companies, including Lucas Arts, have left San Rafael:[ citation needed ]
According to San Rafael's 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,the top employers in the city are:
|#||Employer||# of Employees|
|4||City of San Rafael||592|
|8||Bradley Real Estate||350|
|9||Dominican University of California||336|
|10||Guide Dogs for the Blind||280|
San Rafael contains a number of parks:
San Rafael has one university, Dominican University of California.
The Ali Akbar College of Music, was founded in San Rafael by Indian musician Ali Akbar Khan to teach Indian classical music.
San Rafael is also the home to one of the two campuses of Guide Dogs for the Blind, a guide dog training school.
Most public schools in San Rafael are operated by the San Rafael City Schools district. Dixie School District operates some public elementary and middle schools north of San Rafael proper. All comprehensive public high schools are governed by San Rafael City Schools.
The district operates two comprehensive public high schools: San Rafael High School, Terra Linda High School and one alternative high school, Madrone.
Public schools not operated by the district include:
The major north-south freeway through San Rafael is U.S. Route 101, connecting the North Coast (California) and the Redwood Empire to the north, and San Francisco to the south. Interstate 580 heads across the Richmond–San Rafael Bridge to the East Bay.
The San Rafael Transit Center, located at the corner of 3rd and Hetherton Streets, is served by a number of bus agencies, including Golden Gate Transit, Marin Transit, Sonoma County Transit, Sonoma County Airport Express, and Greyhound.Local bus service is provided primarily by Golden Gate Transit and Marin Transit.
Commuter rail by Sonoma–Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) serves the city at two stations: a converted San Rafael Transit Center and a station at Marin Civic Center. The line opened to the Santa Rosa Airport in 2017 and will extend south to Larkspur to make the ferry connection in 2018.
The term "420" when used in reference to cannabis consumption is believed to have originated in San Rafael, specifically, at San Rafael High School. Since then, use of "420" has spread throughout the rest of the United States,[ citation needed ] and much of the rest of the world,[ citation needed ] in reference to cannabis consumption on April 20 or at 4:20 p.m., the time the original group gathered after school.
Shel Silverstein's poem "The Smoke-Off" is about a girl named Pearly Sweetcakes who came from San Rafael.
Although not every location in San Rafael is part of a neighborhood that has a widely accepted and widely recognized name, there are some neighborhoods that have names that are accepted and recognized by most locals. The City of San Rafael 2020 General Plan recognizes 30 distinct neighborhoods in San Rafael:
San Anselmo is an incorporated town in Marin County, California, United States. San Anselmo is located 1.5 miles (2.4 km) west of San Rafael, at an elevation of 46 feet. It is located about 20 miles (32 km) north of San Francisco. The town is bordered by San Rafael to the east, Fairfax to the west, and Ross to the south. Mount Tamalpais dominates the view to the south. The population was 12,336 at the 2010 census.
Newark is a city in Alameda County, California, United States. It was incorporated as a city in September 1955. Newark is an enclave, surrounded by the city of Fremont. The three cities of Newark, Fremont, and Union City make up the Tri-City Area. Its population was 44,205 in 2015 making it the third largest city in the US named Newark after Newark, Ohio and Newark, New Jersey.
San Ramon is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States, located 34 miles east of San Francisco, and within the San Ramon Valley. San Ramon's population was estimated as 75,931 in 2017 by the US Census Bureau, making it the 4th largest city in Contra Costa County, behind Richmond, Concord and Antioch.
Corte Madera is an incorporated town in Marin County, California, United States. Corte Madera is located 3.25 miles (5.2 km) south of San Rafael, at an elevation of 39 feet. The population was 9,253 at the 2010 census.
Kentfield is a census-designated place (CDP) in Marin County, California, United States, just north of San Francisco. Kentfield is located on the Northwestern Pacific Railroad 2 miles (3.2 km) southwest of downtown San Rafael, at an elevation of 115 feet. The population was 6,485 at the 2010 census. The ZIP codes are 94904 for street addresses, and 94914 for PO boxes, and are shared with the neighboring community of Greenbrae.
Larkspur is a city in Marin County, California, United States. Larkspur is located 3 miles (4.8 km) south of San Rafael, at an elevation of 43 feet (13 m). As of the 2010 Census, the city's population was 11,926. Larkspur is located north of San Francisco near Mount Tamalpais. Larkspur's Police Department is shared with that of the neighboring Corte Madera and town of San Anselmo as the Central Marin Police Authority. Intersecting Larkspur's downtown is Madrone Canyon, a residential area amidst a redwood grove.
Mill Valley is a city in Marin County, California, United States, located about 14 miles (23 km) north of San Francisco via the Golden Gate Bridge. The population was 13,903 at the 2010 census.
Muir Beach is a census designated place (CDP), unincorporated community, and beach that is located 16.5 miles (26.6 km) northwest of San Francisco in western Marin County, California, United States. It is named for John Muir. The population was 310 at the 2010 census. The community itself flanks the northwest side of the beach.
Novato is a city in northern Marin County, in the North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, in the U.S. state of California. As of the 2010 United States Census, its population was 51,904. Novato is located about 10 miles (16 km) northwest of San Rafael and about 30 miles (48 km) north of San Francisco on U.S. 101. Novato has been called one of the best places to live in the U.S.
Sausalito is a city in Marin County, California, located 8 miles (13 km) south-southeast of San Rafael, 4 miles (7 km) north of San Francisco.
Strawberry, California is a census-designated place (CDP) and an unincorporated district of Marin County, California, United States. Strawberry shares a zip code (94941) with Mill Valley and falls within its school districts, however, it is considered within the sphere of influence of the Town of Tiburon. It is separated from Mill Valley by U.S. Route 101. The population was 5,393 at the 2010 census.
Brisbane is a small city located in California in the northern part of San Mateo County on the lower slopes of San Bruno Mountain. It is located on the southern border of San Francisco, on the northeastern edge of South San Francisco, next to San Francisco Bay and near San Francisco International Airport. The population was 4,282 as of the 2010 census.
Daly City is the largest city in San Mateo County, California, United States, with an estimated 2014 population of 106,094. Located immediately south of San Francisco, it is named in honor of businessman and landowner John Donald Daly.
Pacifica is a city in San Mateo County, California, on the coast of the Pacific Ocean between San Francisco and Half Moon Bay.
Gilroy is a city located in Northern California's Santa Clara County, south of Morgan Hill and north of San Benito County. The city's population was 48,821 at the 2010 United States Census.
Santa Clara is a city in Santa Clara County, California. The city's population was 116,468 as of the 2010 United States Census, making it the ninth-most populous city in the San Francisco Bay Area. Located 45 miles (72 km) southeast of San Francisco, the city was founded in 1777 with the establishment of Mission Santa Clara de Asís, the eighth of 21 California missions. The city was later incorporated in 1852. The mission, the city, and the county are all named for Saint Clare of Assisi.
Petaluma is a city in Sonoma County, in California's Wine Country, part of the North Bay sub-region of the San Francisco Bay Area, located 37 mi (60 km) north of San Francisco. Its population was 57,941 according to the 2010 Census.
Marin City is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) in Marin County, California, United States. It is located 1.5 miles (2.4 km) northwest of downtown Sausalito, and about 5 miles north of San Francisco from the Golden Gate Bridge, at an elevation of 23 feet. Marin City was developed for housing starting in 1942, to accommodate war-time shipyard workers and other migrants to California. Among those were African Americans from the South in the Great Migration, which continued until 1970.
Sleepy Hollow is a census-designated place in Marin County, California. It is located 7 miles (11 km) south of downtown Novato, at an elevation of 177 feet. Its population as of the 2010 census is 2,384.
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