Everyone is required to stay home, except for essential needs. When out, protect yourself and those around you by wearing a face covering, staying 6 feet away from others, and washing your hands often. Learn more at cityofberkeley.info/covid19. City offices are closed to the public. Some services are available remotely.

The City of Berkeley Health Officer has ordered all residents to shelter at home, leaving only to receive or provide essential services, starting 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 17. See details of the Order, frequently asked questions, and recommendations from Berkeley Public Health at https://www.cityofberkeley.info/coronavirus.

City Council Live Stream: Please visit https://www.cityofberkeley.info/CalendarEventWebcastMain.aspx

ZAB Live Stream: Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx.

The City of Berkeley web site is undergoing scheduled maintenance starting on Friday night, September 13 and ending on Saturday afternoon, September 14. During this time, most web pages should be available, but some resources may become unavailable for short periods of time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 5/9/19, at 7:00pm? Please visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1UAnZ8kU8EWllREyOY7rwQ/. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 2/28/19, from 6:00 to 11:00 PM? Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same date and time.

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Parks Division
Parks Division

Shorebird Nature Center

The Shorebird Nature Center is currently closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

SPNClogo3          Shorebird Park/Strawbale Nature Center information    

Strawbale Visitor and Nature Center                         To get back into the Marina Experience web pages click here

Open to the public -Tuesday -Saturday  9-5
9-1:00 Tues- Fri -Classroom programs may keep us in the other building so if you call first, we can be sure to help you.

The City of Berkeley’s Shorebird Park Nature Center is the first municipal strawbale building in the United States. It has a solar hot water radiant system to provide heating year-round in the cool marina climate, and a solar photovoltaic electrical system to power the aquariums, computers, lighting and other equipment.   Our  Straw Bale building  is  the Nature/Visitors Center and Office. Here you'll find  a 50 gallon salt tank, a 30 gallon fresh water tank and displays on Marine mammals and birds.The building itself is a display on green building.  The Visitors' Center provides information to visitors concerning all areas of recreation and marine conservation and education.  We do group tours which include watching a video on the process of building this building.
Our  phone number is 510- 981-6720,and  the  fax is 510 981-6725
Schools and/ or teachers who would like more information should contact the center's program coordinator Anthony DeCicco.  This is also the office for the Adventure Playground, and we do the Shoreline cleanups year round. We  need volunteers for our Bay Interpretive training program to help with our education programs during the school year.

The classroom is where we hold workshops, trainings and teach classes. It now has a 200 gallon salt water aquarium which displays creatures that live in the San Francisco Bay. and fresh water ecosystem with a 200 gal. fresh water native lake fish tank.
Mid-week, the classroom holds the school group presentations, teacher workshops, and Summer Marine Biology Classes




With the donation of the Skystream 3.7 wind system from Southwest Windpower, Green Classroom building is powered by wind from San Francisco Bay. This wind turbine is the first municipally-owned wind turbine in the nation.



Building Heating

- Solar Hot Water Heating System

Solar heating can reduce and sometimes eliminate the use of energy from sources that pollute the environment.  See the informational sheet titled “Shorebird Park Nature Center Solar Hot Water System.”

Building Cooling

- Natural Ventilation System


On a warm day buildings are often hotter inside than the air outside.  Natural ventilation is a method of circulating cool air through a building.  Cool air is pulled into a room via low louvers.  As this air warms, it rises, and is eventually released through high placed windows


- Rainwater Harvesting System


Rainwater harvesting is the collection of rainwater for use during the dry season.  This system reduces the environmental impact caused by the collection and distribution of domestic water.  See the informational sheet titled “Shorebird Park Nature Center Rainwater Harvesting System”.



Concrete Mix

- Fly Ash


Fly ash is generally captured from the chimneys of coal-fired power plants. The reuse of fly ash helps to reduce landfill waste. It can be reused to replace up to 30% by mass of Portland cement—the binding material in a concrete mix.  Additionally, fly ash increases the strength, durability and chemical resistance of the concrete.

Window Glazing

- Low E2

- 1” Insulated glass

Solar control glass, also called Low E2, is a good glass for hot days because, in addition to improving the insulating ability of windows, it also limits solar heat gain by blocking passage of infrared and some ultraviolet rays. When compared to tinted window coatings, solar control glass allows a higher level of visible light to pass through a window with less solar heat gain reduction.

Window Frames

-  Thermally Broken

Aluminum window frames are more durable in the harsh ocean environment, but metal is a very poor insulator.  A thermal break is a concealed band of insulating, high-density plastic that separates the outer metal frame from the inner metal frame.  Thermal breaks can significantly reduce the transfer of hot and cold temperatures between the interior and exterior of the window.

[Patcraft “Homeroom II”]

- Eco Solution Q Premium Branded Fiber

- Ecoworx Backing

Eco Solution Q Premium Branded Fiber with 25% Recycled Content

Ecoworx Backing is 100% PVC free.

Eco Solution Q fiber and EcoWorx backing are among the first Cradle to Cradle products in the world. Here's how it works: We use Raw Materials are used to make a product. That product gets purchased and used. After it has served its useful life, that product gets broken down into raw materials again and used to make the very same kind of products.

[Armstrong Marmorette]
 Low-Emitting Resilient Flooring
- Recycled Content 10% or 20%
- Rapidly Renewable Resource

Linoleum is a floor covering made from renewable materials such as solidified linseed oil (linoxyn), pine rosin, ground cork dust, wood flour, and mineral fillers such as calcium carbonate, and is most commonly backed with burlap or canvas.


 Woven with 100% Polyolefin

Woven with 100% Polyolefin, a nonallergenic material that will not mildew, rot, or support the growth of bacteria.

Suspended Acoustic Ceiling

Recycled Content

- Suspended System Minimum 25%
- Panels: Low-Emitting
- Panels: 79-85% Total Recycled Content

[David M. Bertino Manufacturing, Inc.]

- Veneer Core Plywood: Certified as Sustainably Harvested by Organizations Accredited by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) principles:

- Prohibit conversion of forests or any other natural habitat

- Prohibit the use of hazardous chemicals

- Identification and appropriate management of areas that need special protection (e.g. cultural or sacred sites, habitats of endangered animals or plants)

Metal Roof
[Magna-Loc Panel]

- ENERGY STAR Partnership

Magna-Loc Panel meets Energy Star Requirements for emissivity and reflectivity.

ENERGY STAR partnership offers a proven energy management strategy that helps in measuring current energy performance, setting goals, tracking savings, and rewarding improvements.

Lighting - Indoors

- Occupancy sensor

- Automatic Daylighting Control Certified by Energy Commission

The major “sustainable” benefit from daylighting is from associated energy savings. Occupancy sensors turn off the lights when no one is using the room. Automatic daylighting controls adjust the light level in response to daylight levels. Such lighting control measures have been shown to result in savings of as much as 75% of lighting energy.

Lighting - Outdoor

- Full Cutoff

- Light Pollution Reduction

Full cutoff fixtures are those that illuminate mostly downward, thus reducing light pollution. Light pollution is light spilling beyond where it is needed. Decreasing light pollution increases access to the night sky while also improving nighttime visibility and lessening the disturbance to nocturnal creatures.

Fiber Cement Siding
[JamesHardie “HardiPlank Lap Siding”]
- Non-Asbestos Material

HardiePlank lap siding is a non-asbestos material offering low maintenance and an unmatched resistance to weather damage in wet and humid climates.


- Low VOC

Low - VOC and No-VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) paints are less harmful to human and environmental health than other paints because they contain fewer groundwater-polluting and ozone-depleting contaminants.


- Native Plants

- Mulch from and Tree Clippings

- Cardboard Sheet Mulch

- Drip Irrigation

-    Native plants provide suitable habitat for native species of butterflies, birds, and other wildlife.
    Mulch keeps moisture in the ground longer and reduces the intrusion of unwanted plants.  Shredded tree clippings are a good local source of mulch.
    Sheet mulching is a way to remove unwanted plants without the use of herbicides.  Rolls of cardboard sheet mulch are laid on the ground to control the growth of unwanted plants by eliminating the plant’s access to air and light.
    Drip irrigation is an irrigation method which saves water by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of plants, either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone, through a network of valves, pipes, tubing, and emitters.  In native landscaping it is usually used temporarily, just until the plants become established and can survive on the latent moisture in the ground and the rain and fog.


Construction Method

- Modular Construction

- Factory Built Off-site

Modular construction provides an alternative to building at the site.  This method can reduce cost and make green buildings more affordable. 

Building materials are used more efficiently in a factory setting, reducing waste.

 We are short staffed so cannot man each building full time. If you'd like a tour, please call so we can accommodate you.


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Parks Division, 1326 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA 94702
Questions or comments? Email: trees@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-6660
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903