OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Four new Flex Streets locations are coming to Oakland on Saturday to help merchants struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic, city business leaders said.

Three of the sites are located downtown and one is nearby in the Uptown District. They will be open from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday.

Flex Streets gives Oaklanders more room on city streets to gather and encourages residents and visitors to patronize businesses especially
during the economic hard times.

“Put your money where your heart is,” said Andrew Jones, program director for the Uptown Downtown Community Benefit Districts, which recently merged into one organization.

He said the businesses may not last unless people patronize them again.

One location is the 13th Street Commons, on 13th Street between Franklin Street and Broadway. Another is on Washington Street between Eighth and Ninth streets. A third site is on Telegraph Avenue between 16th and 17th streets and the fourth is on Webster Street between Grand Avenue and 22nd Street.

The 13th Street Commons is in the Black Arts Movement Business District. Business leaders said visiting the district is a good opportunity
to get involved in peacemaking and economic development on the street.