Highway 13 (aka “The Warren” or the "Warren Freeway," named for Earl Warren) begins at 580 in East Oakland and continues north. It becomes Tunnel Road and then Ashby Avenue past the Highway 24 interchange. In this section, 13 is just a street, and a busy, hard-to-drive-on street at that. Caltrans had originally planned to construct a freeway all the way to I-80 in Berkeley, but massive resistance in Berkeley defeated this plan.
The freeway portion of the route is very scenic. It’s often light on traffic, a good choice if one wants to bypass congestion elsewhere in Oakland. During traffic times, however, it can back up terribly going north toward Berkeley (thanks to the Highway 24 interchange) and southbound where it merges into 580.
When initially constructed beginning in 1950, the freeway was called the Mountain Boulevard Freeway—and if you look closely at some of the highway signs, you will see faded references to Warren Boulevard, the name given to the route in 1957 when it was first renamed for Earl Warren. At that point it ran from Lake Temescal to Park Blvd. 1
Be careful on Highway 13. People drive Very Fast on this freeway (but not as fast as on 580). It’s very narrow and windy and often fogged in! ¡Cuidado!
Links and References
- Work Begins on Mountain Blvd. Freeway Oakland Tribune September 14, 1950
- Freeway Named Warren Boulevard Oakland Tribune October 2, 1957