"Busy from end to end, lots of options"
University Avenue is one of the main streets in Berkeley. It runs all the way from the waterfront to the University of California. It has a very ungentrified feel throughout, which is refreshing considering how some of the other neighborhoods in Berkeley have changed. There are multiple grocery stores at the west end, many, many, many shops for items from India, restaurants (both fast food and classy) multiple thrift stores, bookstores, hardware stores.... really just about anything you could ever need. For driving, it can get really, really backed up at times especially near the freeway. There are multiple bus lines, including the 51 and the 52L, which both run frequently during both day and night. There are BART stations a few blocks away on either side, in North Berkeley and Downtown. The Berkeley Amtrak station is on University as well. Mostly safe all hours, but it can be just a little seedy in certain pockets near San Pablo.