The Posey Tube is an immersed underwater tunnel connecting Oakland to the City of Alameda under the Oakland Estuary. Opened on October 27, 1928, the Posey Tube was named after Alameda County Surveyor George Posey. The Prelinger Archives include a fascinating three-minute newsreel showing the first section of the Tube being floated across the Bay from Hunters Point, San Francisco, to its ultimate location in the Estuary.
Originally, the Posey Tube provided two-way access between Oakland and Alameda. In 1963, with the completion of the Webster Street Tube, the Posey Tube was converted so that it was used only for northbound traffic from Alameda to Oakland.
On June 23, 1992, the Posey Tube Portal, located at 415 Harrison Street, was designated Oakland Landmark #110, under Zoning Case #LM 91-128.
It is possible to walk or bike through the Posey Tube via a narrow strip hugging the east side of the tube. An average 86 people per day used it in 2006. 2 It is safe to use this walkway insofar as that it has a guardrail protecting the pedestrians and cyclists from cars. It's dangerous in the fact that it's not wide enough for two cyclists to cross without dismounting, but there are signs instructing cyclists to walk their bikes. Since there is only one path for both directions crossing requires being vigilant about watching for oncoming bike traffic.
Being in the tube while not in car is very loud, amidst the disgustingly dirty walls. While some say this is unpleasant and bad for your health, others use it as a good opportunity to let out primal screams and the frustrations of trying to transport consciously in a gasoline dream society.
Links and References
- Posey Tube and Webster Street Tube, Alameda, California Alameda Info
- New Posey Tube shuttle begins service Oakland Tribune August 15, 2011