What Bert Has To Say About Vallejo-Fairfield Metro Area
This area, known also as Solano County, is really a series of residential communities strung along I-80 as it heads east from the San Francisco Bay Area. The string starts with Vallejo (once a gritty port and navy town), which has transformed as a result of Bay Area crowding and high home prices into a fairly desirable commuter community. East across a narrow range of mountains, the land flattens again into the towns of Cordelia, Suisun City and the larger Fairfield and Vacaville.
Fairfield was once primarily a military town supporting Travis Air Force Base, which is still an important part of the local economy. A number of commercial and industrial enterprises have spread into Fairfield and especially the Vacaville area to escape (but still serve) the Bay Area. These firms, from chemical to biotech to small manufacturers, have sprung up in the open valleys mainly in Vacaville and east and have created a lot of employment. Taken together with those commuting into the Bay, incomes and employment for residents of the area are strong.
Proximity to the Bay and geographic barriers (mountains and marshes) have restricted building somewhat, driving home prices upward. Most homes are modern California style – large houses with very small lots in tracts surrounded by high sound walls, with a crowded feel even though there’s an empty field or marsh adjacent to the tract. Schools, health care, shopping and other facilities are new and modern. Entertainment and arts venues in the immediate area are modest, but the area has good access to San Francisco and to the college town of Davis to the east.
Vallejo, Fairfield and Vacaville are built on narrow strips of flat, dry land between dry coastal mountains and the marshlands surrounding San Pablo and Suisun Bays, eastern extensions of the San Francisco Bay. Further east, the land spreads into prime agricultural land used mainly for orchards and vegetable growing. The climate is Mediterranean marine with a very strong influence from the San Francisco Bay just west. Summer days are pleasantly warm; evenings are cool and incursions of low, stratus clouds are common. The area can be windy, particularly in Fairfield, when large temperature differences arise between the Bay and the inland Central Valley. Most precipitation falls in winter as light to moderate rain, and temperatures seldom drop below freezing.