Theory Group, MS:50A-5104
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
1 Cyclotron Road
Berkeley, CA 94720

Administrative contact:

Deborah Smith
(510) 486-5335

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Getting to Berkeley

Unless you arrive at odd hours, the simplest way to get from San Francisco airport (SFO) to Berkeley is taking the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit). Looking at the SFO map, the BART station is next to the International Terminal G (sometimes JetBlue) and a couple of minute walk from Terminal 3 (United), otherwise take the free AirTrain to BART (runs every few minutes).  The BART takes 55min and costs $9.25 each way (as of early 2015), it’s every 15min during the day, every 20min at nights and weekends.  Tickets can be purchased at any BART station; hold on to it as it’s needed to exit.  At SFO, take the Richmond line directly to the Downtown Berkeley stop, or takePittsburg/Bay Point train to the 19th St. Oakland station, were you can transfer to the Richmond train to the Downtown Berkeley station.  (The trains usually wait for each other at this station, except when one of them is delayed.) From OAK airport, you can also take BART ($8.50 each way); the station is located across from the Terminal 1 baggage claim area and a short walk from Terminal 2.  Change at Oakland Coliseum to the Richmond train, and take that to Downtown Berkeley.

A taxi from SFO to Berkeley will probably cost ~$100 and an Uber car around ~$60. Driving times vary between 35 minutes (no traffic, very rare) to well over 1h15 (traffic jam on bay bridge, quite common). Street parking is free 6pm — 9am in Berkeley. Use of a rental car is not encouraged unless you plan to visit other Bay Area institutions. If the theory group is paying for your travel expenses, please consult with us before renting a car.

Getting to LBL

If you arrive by BART,  take the main exit at the Downtown Berkeley (with an escalator to street level), and you’ll be at the “ba” sign on this map. The LBL shuttle bus stops is one block from the BART exit, at the corner of Kala Bagai way and Addison Street, in front of the “Sandwich zone” cafe. Please take the “blue” shuttle, as the “orange” line does not pass by the physics building. When boarding the shuttle, show your ID to driver and tell them you are a visitor. The shuttle comes roughly every 15 to 20 minutes.

If you arrive by car (rental, taxi or rideshare), please be aware that google maps will by default send you to the back entrance of the lab (“strawberry gate”), which is not open for visitors. To avoid this, please enter

“Berkeley Lab Blackberry Gate, 1 Cyclotron Rd, Berkeley, CA 94720”

in google maps, or ask your driver to do so. Note that there is a lot of large wildlife on the lab grounds (turkeys and deer), so please exercise caution while driving, especially after dark.

When arriving to the front gate (“blackberry gate”) of the lab, security will ask for your ID and verify that you are on the visitor list for that day. This may take a few minutes. If you arrive by shuttle, the shuttle will usually wait for you. If it does, get off the shuttle at the “building 65” stop, which is the next stop after the gate. It is easily recognizable by 3 large flagpoles. If the shuttle does not wait, e.g. due to high traffic volume or a particularly slow security check, you can just follow the road uphill on foot, as the “building 65” stop is very close to the front gate, though slightly uphill. From the bus stop, cross the road to the large, old looking building (“building 50”) and take the elevator to the 5th floor.

Further information can be found behind the following links, such including directions, a map of the LBNL site and the shuttle bus information.

Getting to UC Berkeley campus

The UC Berkeley campus is one block away from the BART stop, with the physics building being right behind the large bell tower. The physics complex consists out of three buildings: Physics North, Physics South and Birge Hall. (The former two used to be collectively known as “Leconte Hall”, which is how it is still displayed on google maps.) The theory group is located in Physics south, on the 4th floor. The easiest way to find us is to use one of the entrances on Oppenheimer way, and head up the large stairs to the 4th floor immediately after entering.

Parking in and around campus is notoriously difficult, and we discourage driving if an alternative transportation mode can work for you. If you do need a parking permit, please get in touch with your host.


If you’re interested in overnight accommodations at the lab, please consult the Berkeley Lab Guest House for information. If you’re invited by a Theory Group member, we may be able to reserve a Guest House room for you with direct billing to LBNL.  In the event on-site accommodation is not available, lodging in downtown Berkeley may be available at the Downtown Berkeley Inn or the Hotel Shattuck Plaza.

Site access & parking

To request LBNL site access and a shuttle or parking pass, please notify Troy Cortez (tcortez(at) or your Theory Group contact at least 24 hours in advance of your visit (72 hours if you plan to come to LBNL on a Monday).