San Bruno

The city's first public school was completed in late 1906. With the construction of Edgemont Elementary School in 1910, all classes were moved there and the original school building became a public facility named Green Hall. Another school, North Brae Elementary School, opened in 1912; among its earliest students was future actor Eddie "Rochester" Anderson. Paving of California's first state highway, El Camino Real, began in 1912 in front of San Bruno's Uncle Tom's Cabin.

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San Bruno Real Estate

The city's first public school was completed in late 1906. With the construction of Edgemont Elementary School in 1910, all classes were moved there and the original school building became a public facility named Green Hall. Another school, North Brae Elementary School, opened in 1912; among its earliest students was future actor Eddie "Rochester" Anderson. Paving of California's first state highway, El Camino Real, began in 1912 in front of San Bruno's Uncle Tom's Cabin; the highway is now designated as State Route 82. The adjoining San Francisco International Airport opened in early 1927 and included a Weather Bureau station, now operated by the National Weather Service. Charles Lindbergh was an early visitor to the airport, during his national tour following his successful transatlantic flight; unfortunately, his airplane (Spirit of St. Louis) became stuck in the mud!
On January 18, 1911, aviator Eugene Ely made naval aviation history when he took off from Tanforan and made a successful landing on the armored cruiser USS Pennsylvania anchored in San Francisco Bay. This marked the first successful shipboard aircraft landing.
Following a campaign by the local newspaper, the San Bruno Herald, the community was incorporated in 1914, mainly so the streets could be paved. Green Hall became the first city hall. San Bruno grew rapidly, passing 1,500 residents by 1920 and 3,610 residents in 1930. Additional schools, including New Edgemont (later renamed Decima Allen) and Crystal Springs, were built during the 1940s.
In 1930, the El Camino Theater opened at the corner of El Camino Real and San Mateo Avenue. The popular theater, wired for sound, replaced the earlier Melody Theater, which had presented silent films. The El Camino showed double features, cartoons, short comedies, adventure serials, and newsreels during its history, including Saturday matinees and summer Wednesday matinees for children. Normally, films changed every week, but in 1958 Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments ran for two weeks to packed audiences. The theater closed in the early 1970s when a four-screen movie theater opened in the Tanforan shopping center. The El Camino Theater building was remodeled and currently houses several businesses. A larger, multi-screen complex was later built north of Tanforan, but it has been replaced by an even larger complex in Tanforan.
In 1939, the War Department created the Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno as space was starting to run out for veterans to be buried at the Presidio of San Francisco.
Following World War II, there was continued growth and new subdivisions in Mills Park, Rollingwood, and Crestmoor. In 1947, the Bayshore Freeway (U.S. Route 101) was opened from South San Francisco to Redwood City and included an interchange at San Bruno.
Prior to 1950, San Bruno's high school students attended San Mateo High School (opened in 1902) and then Burlingame High School (opened in 1923), traveling to and from school on the street cars that ran next to the Southern Pacific railroad. Finally, on September 11, 1950, Capuchino High School opened in San Bruno. After years of using Green Hall as a multi-purpose building, the city dedicated a library and city hall in 1954. That same year saw the dedication of the current central terminal at the airport, part of a major expansion program. A central fire station was later built next to the city hall; an additional station was built in Crestmoor.
The city's most famous native, actress and businesswoman Suzanne Somers was born in San Bruno in 1946. She attended local schools and graduated from Capuchino High School in June 1964. During her senior year at Capuchino, Suzanne had a featured role (as Adelaide) in the school's 1964 production of the musical comedy Guys and Dolls.
In 1953, San Bruno annexed the adjoining unincorporated community of Lomita Park, bounded by San Felipe Avenue, El Camino Real, San Juan Avenue, and the railroad tracks. Until the annexation, Lomita Park had its own Southern Pacific train station and some community services.
Parkside Intermediate School was opened in 1954, followed by additional elementary schools: Rollingwood, Crestmoor, John Muir, and Carl Sandburg. A second intermediate school, Engvall, was built in Crestmoor Canyon, only to be closed, along with North Brae and Sandburg, when enrollment fell. These were all part of the San Bruno Park School District. Students in northwestern San Bruno were included in the Laguna Salada district. The private school, Highlands Christian School, is also located in San Bruno. Founded in 1966, Highlands Christian School is an interdenominational school, a ministry of Church of the Highlands, and teaches from toddlers to college preparatory school.
San Bruno considered new annexations in the mid-1950s that would have extended the city limits to the Pacific Ocean. The unincorporated communities west of San Bruno decided they did not want to become part of San Bruno, so they incorporated in 1957 as the city of Pacifica.
The March 22, 1957, earthquake (5.3 magnitude) caused minor damage throughout the city, especially in some of the schools, where windows were broken and plaster cracked. A large chunk of plasterboard fell on the table where school district administrators were meeting; fortunately, no one was injured. Numerous cans and bottles were knocked off shelves at local stores, some of which were closed temporarily. Capuchino High School closed for the day following the quake, while other schools evacuated students to open areas. Many residents reported damage to crockery.
Eitel-McCullough operated a large manufacturing plant in San Bruno for many years. William Eitel and Jack McCullogh formed the company in 1934. It specialized in the manufacture of power grid tubes.[13] Known as Eimac, the company also made vacuum tubes used in communication equipment, as well as other products for military and commercial applications. Due to its work on broadcast transmission parts, Eimac operated an FM radio station, KSBR, which transmitted on 100.5 megahertz. The station began operations in 1947 and, that same year, was one of only two in the nation to test Rangertone tape recorders. (The other station was WASH in Washington, D.C.) The recorders were based on the German Magnetophon. In need of more space, the company moved to San Carlos in 1959. Eimac's San Carlos plant was dedicated on April 16, 1959. In 1965, Eimac merged with Varian Associates and became known as the Eimac Division. In 1995, Leonard Green & Partners purchased the entire Electron Devices Business from Varian and formed Communications & Power Industries.
Crestmoor High School opened in September 1962, but was closed in June 1980 due to a decline in school enrollment. The city has a two-year community college, Skyline College.
A major landmark in San Bruno for many years was the Tanforan Racetrack, which opened in 1899. Such famous racehorses as Seabiscuit and Citation raced there. Famed Hollywood director Frank Capra filmed scenes for two of his films, Broadway Bill and Riding High, at the racetrack. For six months in 1942, it served as a one of the main Bay Area centers for those forced into Japanese American internment, processing about 7800 Japanese, usually for about four-five months before they were sent out to larger facilities in the desert of Utah and Manzanar in the Owens Valley.The track closed in 1964 and was about to be demolished when it was destroyed in a major fire on July 31, 1964. The city's only shopping mall was later built on the site; surrounding city streets were named for some of the racehorses who appeared at Tanforan.
During the late 1960s, the I-280 (Junipero Serra Freeway), followed by I-380, was built through San Bruno. The San Bruno Planning Commission (then chaired by Peter Weinberger, brother of Caspar Weinberger) reviewed and approved plans for two major shopping centers, Bayhill (located on the old U.S. Navy property between San Bruno Avenue and Sneath Lane) and Tanforan. With final approval by the San Bruno City Council, construction proceeded on these major retail developments. Prior to that most of the city's stores were located on San Mateo Avenue and El Camino Real.
The October 17, 1989, Loma Prieta earthquake (6.9 magnitude) caused some damage in the city. The U.S. Postal Service's Western Regional headquarters, then the tallest building in San Bruno, had to be demolished due to severe structural damage. The world headquarters for The Gap clothing company is now the tallest building in the city.

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