The architecture of downtown Berkeley is changing

Hello, Bay Area. It’s Tuesday, May 31, and Tahoe officials are cracking down on bad boater behavior. Here’s what you need to know to start your day.

Berkeley is experiencing a real estate boom and this will have a significant impact on the character of the downtown area.

At least 10 five- to 14-story apartment buildings are under construction, most on Shattuck Avenue. And there are just as many others approved or under consideration.

“But as the character of the city center changes, its two newer apartment buildings are worth seeing for another very important reason – to assess whether newcomers are connecting with their surroundings in a meaningful way, particularly where the structure meets the ground,” design critic John King writes.

Learn more here.

• How are home prices changing in the Bay Area? Track property values ​​with The Chronicle’s interactive map.

The “hidden” toll of the pandemic

Masks, test kits and medicine from Germany are used by an Oakland couple forced to self-isolate in a Berlin hotel after contracting the coronavirus.

Courtesy of Lisa Scimens

Official tallies show that 90,000 California state residents have died from COVID-19, but the actual death toll may be higher.

Researchers say there are more than 20,000 “hidden” excess deaths which are a combination of countless COVID deaths, which may have been deliberately overlooked for political reasons, and other pandemic-related causes such as violence military, overdoses and strained hospital systems.

“California is definitely prone to underreporting” deaths, said Andrew Stokes, a professor at Boston University’s School of Public Health and principal investigator working on the Excess Deaths Data Project. “Some counties have significant undercounts.”

Read more from Susie Neilson.

More virus news:

• A study of more than 60,000 people tested for coronavirus in San Francisco found interesting changes in COVID symptoms over three different outbreaks.

• Chronicle Health reporter Erin Allday has written about COVID for more than two years and recently came face to face with the virus herself.

• The COVID antiviral pill Paxlovid is now available by mail to eligible patients who test positive.

• An Oakland couple’s European vacation was derailed halfway through the trip when they fell ill with COVID.

what to eat

Spicy Fried Chicken Tenders, Sliders and Sides from Dave's Hot Chicken.

Spicy Fried Chicken Tenders, Sliders and Sides from Dave’s Hot Chicken.

Dave’s Hot Chicken

While spicy hot chicken joints aren’t new to the Bay Area, one brand in particular has people buzzing. Los Angeles-based Dave’s Hot Chicken franchises are opening this summer in Oakland, San Leandro and Sunnyvale. Existing locations in Santa Rosa and Union City have already drawn long lines of customers hungry for Nashville-inspired fried chicken.

Another popular chain, Shake Shack, continues its Bay Area expansion with restaurant openings in Walnut Creek and San Jose. The east coast chain previously announced new spots opening in Emeryville and San Francisco later this year. The new restaurants will join seven existing Bay Area Shake Shacks.

The South Bay and Peninsula recently opened several new restaurants, including Australian restaurant Naschmarkt in Palo Alto, which serves homemade spätzle and pretzels, and a physical location of the famous El Flamingo Tacos Truck in San Mateo.

around the bay

Sen. Alex Padilla, D-California, is a big favorite to keep his job, but he is campaigning hard nonetheless.

Sen. Alex Padilla, D-California, is a big favorite to keep his job, but he is campaigning hard nonetheless.

Shuran Huang / Special at The Chronicle

Work hard, campaign harder: Sen. Alex Padilla, D-California, faces virtually no serious competition ahead of the June 7 primary, but that hasn’t stopped him from working at a blistering pace.

From Heather Knight: Why does Muni want $400 million to shore up SF Transit? To fix a train system that relies on 50-year-old floppy disks and traffic lights.

Paddling: In Capitola (Santa Cruz County), a group of military veterans took their surfboards out into the Pacific Ocean to honor fallen soldiers on Memorial Day.

Crack down: Lake Tahoe community leaders are embarking on a campaign to prevent unsafe behavior on the water.

Paul Pelosi: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving after a collision in Napa County.

From Joe Garofoli: If there is a silver lining for gun reform, it comes from California. Opinion: Gun control is important, but mental health is also important.

Golden State Warriors: The NBA Finals begin Thursday and the Warriors have home court advantage. Before game 1, they will see if several injured players can return to the field. Andre Iguodala, who has missed much of the season through injury, has always proved vital to the team.

Illegal crab: A commercial fisherman from Vallejo is accused of illegally catching more than 250 Dungeness crabs in a protected reserve off San Francisco. Also: A Sonoma winery developer is facing millions of dollars in fines for allegedly damaging the Russian River watershed.

Opinion: San Francisco needs recall reform, but Proposition C isn’t the answer.

Thousands of trails under threat

The Pacific Crest Trail passes through an area burned by last year's Caldor Fire near Echo Summit in El Dorado County.

The Pacific Crest Trail passes through an area burned by last year’s Caldor Fire near Echo Summit in El Dorado County.

Max Whittaker / Special for The Chronicle

The Pacific Crest Trail is a hiker’s dream: 2,600 miles of trails stretching from Mexico to Canada, winding through the mountains of California, Oregon and Washington State.

But in recent years, the natural wonder has been threatened by climate change, leading to wildfires, rising temperatures, dry springs and less snow and ice.

“It can no longer be ignored: climate change is serious and urgent, and these are some of our last chances to avert some of the worst consequences,” said Jack Haskel, spokesman for the Pacific Crest Trail Association.

The association, which works in partnership with the US Forest Service, has been forced to shift its mission from preserving trails and managing hiking permits to solving environmental problems, writes Gregory Thomas.

Also: California’s mighty Methuselah tree in Inyo National Forest may be dethroned as the world’s oldest tree by an ancient alerce tree in Chile.

Bay Briefing is written by Kellie Hwang and Gwendolyn Wu and sent to readers’ inboxes weekday mornings. Sign up for the newsletter here and contact the writers at [email protected] and [email protected]

David H. Henry