Oakland, CA
United States
The Gardens at Lake Merrit East Bay AIDS Memorial Garden since 1 December 2024
without names
East Bay AIDS Memorial Garden
The AIDS Memorial Garden will honor the lives lost from the HIV epidemic to ensure that we never lose sight of the foundation on which East Bay Getting to Zero’s collaborative work is built.
The purpose of the AIDS Memorial Garden is to memorialize those lost to HIV/AIDS and serve as a community healing space for people in the East Bay who have been significantly impacted by HIV, including surviving family members and friends.
The vision for our garden is to become a space for all generations to learn the history of the HIV epidemic and honor the hard-fought successes of their forebears.
The East Bay AIDS Memorial Garden will be located within The Gardens at Lake Merritt: 666 Bellevue Ave, Oakland, CA 94610

The East Bay AIDS memorial garden project is a collaboration between East Bay Getting to Zero (EBGTZ) and the Gardens at Lake Merritt. EBGTZ’s people living with HIV subcommittee (known as the Poz Plus working group) initiated the idea of establishing an AIDS memorial space in the East Bay in 2021. They identified a need for space that honors the East Bay HIV affected community, memorializes people lost to HIV/AIDS and inspires an environment for healing and reflection.

In 2022, with the support of the EBGTZ core team, EBGTZ steering committee, and the Oakland Mayor’s office, the Poz Plus group identified partners, stakeholders, and a space for the future garden. The East Bay AIDS memorial garden will be located within The Gardens at Lake Merritt at 666 Bellevue Ave in Oakland. Within the Gardens, it will be nestled between the Mediterranean and Bonsai Gardens, next to a waterfall, a creek and a bridge.
The collective vision for the East Bay AIDS memorial garden is that it will be an ode to people living with HIV, in memoriam of those lost to the epidemic, and a space for intergenerational connection and dialogue about the legacy of the HIV and LGBTQ+ movements.

Garden planning
Preliminary architectural design for the East Bay memorial garden has been developed by Sera Design, an Oakland based employee-owned architectural design firm.
The garden is being planned to contain vegetation with an emphasis on native plants and pollinator species to support growth and sustainability. Additionally, the area will include structures for seating, areas dedicated to memorials, educational elements discussing the history of HIV in the East Bay and an environment to invoke reflection and peace.

Tentative timeline
The East Bay AIDS memorial garden is slated to open to the public in 2024. In preparation for opening day, the AIDS memorial garden team at East Bay Getting to Zero will be engaged in planning, coordinating and organizing.

Images © Sera Design East Bay Getting to Zero

1 January 2023
East Bay Getting to Zero, Oakland