Pleasant Hill is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States, in the East Bay of the San Francisco Bay Area. The population was 33,152 at the 2010 census. It was incorporated in 1961. Pleasant Hill is the home of College Park High School, Diablo Valley College, John F Kennedy University, the Pleasant Hill Library and administration offices for the Contra Costa County Library system, and the Pleasant Hill Recreation & Park District.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 7.1 square miles (18 km2). Pleasant Hill has a varied landscape with some valleys and rolling hills. In undisturbed wilderness,oak woodlands and mixed woods can be found. It is located in the central East San Francisco Bay.
Pleasant Hill’s climate is a Mediterranean one having cool and wet winters and dry, warm summers. Winter tends to be in the fifties and sixties and summers reign in the high seventies to upper eighties occasionally reaching the low nineties. On very rare occasions the temperatures can get in the one hundred range during extreme heat waves. Freezing in winter is also rare, but it does happen. Occasionally, summer fog will roll in, but winter fog is very common.
This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Pleasant Hill has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated “Csb” on climate maps.
History and architecture
The first post office opened in 1948. The city incorporated in 1961.
The city hall of Pleasant Hill has won several awards in architectural design.
For most of its history, Pleasant Hill did not have a true downtown or Main Street. In 1991, the city began planning the redevelopment of the area around the intersection of Monument Boulevard and Contra Costa Boulevard. In July 2000, downtown Pleasant Hill finally opened, as a privately owned and operated outdoor shopping center designed to resemble a typical suburban Main Street.
On February 21, 1967, Century 21 Theaters opened its 895-seat “Dome” theater, just east of I-680 between Monument Boulevard and Hookston Road. Visible from the freeway, the futuristic “igloo-shaped” cinema became an iconic landmark for the newly incorporated city. The theater was designed by prolific Bay Area architect Vincent G. Raney with a distinctive 50-foot-high domed ceiling and over-sized curved screen. The theater was initially built to showcase theCinerama widescreen process, which had been developed in the 1950s. The screen was later updated to standard flat-screen. In 1973, four additional single-screen auditoriums were added to the anterior of the building, and its name changed to Century 5 Theatres. Starting in 2003, CinéArts operated the theater, screening primarily independent and foreign films.
The theater’s property owner, SyWest Development, closed the Dome on April 21, 2013. CinéArts screened Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey for its last night of operation. Sywest’s proposal, that the theater be torn down to make way for a two-story, 73,000+ square-foot building to house a Dick’s Sporting Goods, was passed by the Pleasant Hill city council. Two separate appeals against the city’s decision were filed, one by a resident of Pleasant Hill, and one by Save the Pleasant Hill Dome (SPHD) organization. Both appeals were voted down by the city council, although Mayor Michael G. Harris and councilmember Ken Carlson voted for the appeal. SyWest had the Dome demolished on May 8, 2013, precluding any further court action.
Monument Boulevard was so named because of the Soldiers Memorial Monument originally in its proximity, erected in 1927.
According to the City’s 2009 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:
|#||Employer||# of Employees|
|1||Mount Diablo Unified School District||659|
|2||Contra Costa County Fire Protection||450|
|6||Nightingale of Contra Costa||200|
|7||John F. Kennedy University||185|
|8||Contra Costa County Office of Education||165|
|9||Hospices of the East Bay||150|
|10||Irvin Deutscher Family YMCA||150|
Primary and secondary schools
Public schools include: Elementary schools
- Fair Oaks Elementary School
- Gregory Gardens Elementary School
- Pleasant Hill Elementary School
- Sequoia Elementary School
- Strandwood Elementary School
- Valhalla Elementary School
- Pleasant Hill Middle School
- Sequoia Middle School
- Valley View Middle School
Private schools include:
- Christ the King Catholic School
- Pleasant Hill Adventist Academy
Colleges and universities
Parks and recreation
Parks in Pleasant Hill are maintained and managed by the Pleasant Hill Recreation & Park District. The district is a separate entity from the City of Pleasant Hill. The following parks managed by the district include:
- Dinosaur Hill Park
- Pleasant Hill Park
- Pleasant Oaks Park
- Paso Nogal Park
- Chilpancingo Park
- Rogers-Smith Park
- Brookwood Park
- Pleasant Hill Aquatic Park
- Pleasant Hill Education Center Pool