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The Radioactive-ish Island in The Bay

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Halfway between San Francisco and Oakland, smack dab in the middle of the bay, acting as a midway point for the dual spans of the Bay Bridge, sits Treasure Island. While usually bypassed by those driving from one city to the next, the area is actually full of plenty of treasures, some of them grand, some of them cursed.

Built in 1937 in time to host the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition (that is to say, the 1939 World's Fair), the island is chock-full of old buildings listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, was until recently the home to a 40-foot tall sculpture from Burning Man, and offers perhaps the best view you're going to get of gorgeous San Francisco. But also, as this KQED story points out, there are worries of other sorts lingering on the island:

After Treasure Island was constructed in 1939 for the World's Fair, the U.S. Navy used the site to clean ships that were used to test atomic bombs. Many buildings on the island are still marked as radioactive, which concerns several of the families who live there.

Which isn't to say passersby are in danger of radiation poisoning from a simple stop-over; none of the homes on the island have been listed as "unsafe" by the Environmental Protection Agency. In fact, soon the island will be accessible to bikers from the East Bay, once the bike path on the Eastern Span of the Bay Bridge is complete. So, next time you're driving across, don't ignore the exit ramp that takes you to this treasure hidden in plain sight.

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