The City of San Ramon was incorporated in 1983 and is located in the San Ramon Valley of Contra Costa County. The San Ramon Valley has long been considered one of the most desirable living areas in the Bay Area because of its scenic beauty, suburban charms, excellent school systems, and proximity to major employment centers. The City occupies a land area of 18.56 square miles and is surrounded by the communities of Danville and Dublin, as well as the unincorporated lands in both Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.
The lands now occupied by the City of San Ramon were formerly inhabited by Seunen people, an Ohlone/Costanoan group who built their homes near creeks. Sometime around 1797 they were taken by Mission San José for use as grazing land. In 1834, they were part of the Rancho San Ramon land grant to José María Amador. Amador named San Ramón (Spanish for "Saint Ramon") not after a real saint but rather after a Native American vaquero who tended mission sheep on the land. Amador added the "San" per Spanish custom.
The arrival of Interstate 680 in 1966, the development of Bishop Ranch Office Park in 1982 as one of the largest business parks in the region, and the San Ramon Regional Medical Center in 1990 contributed to San Ramon’s rapid growth. Ranches and farms were transformed into attractive housing communities. Bishop Ranch is home to 550 companies representing more than 30 industries, and it includes offices for some of the major corporations in the world, such as Chevron, AT&T, and IBM. The 580-acre office park with 5.9 million square feet of office space is also home to start-ups and growing companies in areas such as social software and clean tech.
San Ramon offers residents a wide array of recreational opportunities at its 54 parks, 3 community centers, and 2 aquatic centers. More than 20 trails are located within the city, including The Iron Horse Trail, a regional multi-use trail that once was the right-of-way for the Southern Pacific Railroad. The city borders the Bishop Ranch Regional and Sycamore Valley open spaces, along with Tassajara Regional Park. It’s a short drive to Mt. Diablo State Park, and Las Trampas Regional Wilderness, among other regional recreational areas. There are three golf courses inside San Ramon, as well as the Bridges Golf Club and Crow Canyon Country Club in Danville, which is right on the city's northern border. Cultural opportunities in San Ramon include the Dougherty Valley Performing Arts Center, where top-rated dance troupes, orchestras and Grammywinning musicians perform.