Concord is the biggest city in Contra Costa County, California. According to an estimate by the United States Census Bureau, the city had a population of 129,295 in 2019, which makes it the 8th largest city in the San Francisco Bay Area. The city is a large regional suburban East Bay center within the San Francisco Bay Area, and is located 29 miles east of San Francisco, 22 miles northeast from Oakland 65 miles southwest of Sacramento and 51 miles north of San Jose.
Concord was founded in 1869 and named Todos Santos by Don Salvio Pacheco II, a noted Californio ranchero. The name was later changed to Concord. The big focal point of downtown Concord is Todos Santos Plaza, which sprawls across an entire city block and is known for its farmers market, free summer concert series, and large number of popular surrounding restaurants. The area surrounding Concord in the Ygnacio and Clayton Valleys was once a large agricultural area. Crops that were once grown there included grapes, almonds, walnuts, hay, wheat, and tomatoes. The area to the east was the site of a few enormous wheat ranches over 5,000 acres. During the Prohibition era, many vineyards were removed and replaced with walnut orchards. The town of Cowell, which is now incorporated into Concord, produced cement.
Concord has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild to cool, wet winters. The ethnic makeup of Concord as of the 2010 census was 64.5% White, 3.6% African American, 0.7% Native American, 11.1% Asian, 0.7% Pacific Islander, 13.1% from other ethnicities, and 6.4% from two or more ethnicities. Hispanic or Latino of any ethnicity were 30.6% of the population.
Concord has been mainly a bedroom community for San Francisco and Oakland over the last forty years, but jobs within the city have increased during the last decades. Round Table Pizza has its headquarters in Concord. Concord also has a strong retail sector which includes the Sunvalley Shopping Center, which was once one of the 50 largest malls in the U.S.
According to the Concord’s 2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are: Mt. Diablo Unified School District, John Muir Medical Center, The Conco Companies, Safeway Inc., Adecco Employment Services, and Macy’s Concord.
California State University, East Bay has one satellite campus in Concord. Concord hosts the annual Concord Jazz Festival and was once the home of the Concord Records jazz record label. Dave Brubeck, the Jazz musician, was born in Concord. In 2006 a park adjacent to Concord High School on Concord Boulevard was renamed Dave Brubeck Park in his honor.
Some points of interest in Concord are Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps, Buchanan Field Airport Concord Pavilion, Dave Brubeck Park, Don Francisco Galindo House, Don Salvio Pacheco Adobe, Markham Regional Arboretum, Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial, Six Flags Waterworld Concord, Sunvalley Mall, Todos Santos Plaza – site of farmer’s market, concerts, and movies, West Wind Solano Drive-In Theater, Willow Pass Community Park, and Ygnacio Valley Park.