Hilton on Hegenberger near Oakland airport to close

Following months of speculation, the Hilton hotel on Hegenberger Road near the Oakland airport is closing after more than 50 years. 

Port of Oakland spokeswoman Marilyn Sandifur told KTVU that they've received notice that the Hilton Oakland Airport Hotel will cease operations on Aug. 28.

She added that the hotel has been a port tenant since 1968. 

The San Francisco Chronicle first reported the development. 

Sandifur said that the port will now have to decide the best use of the property and will work with the city about helping employees affected by the closure.

No reason was given for the Hilton shutting its doors, though there have been several restaurants, including In ‘N Out and Denny’s, that have closed citing concerns about crime along the Hegenberger Corridor. 

People traveling through the city have noticed changes in the area.

"I hate to say it, but it's dirty. Crime is everywhere, but that's all you hear about is crime in the area, so it deters a lot of people from coming out here," said San Diego resident Johari Jones, who flew into the Oakland airport. 

Allison Wall travels from Reno to Oakland at least once a month.

"It makes me sad. This is my go-to place to stay, it's very convenient. It's right across the street from the airport, but frankly, I'm not super surprised," she said. "I stopped gassing up my cars before I return my rental cars in this area probably two years ago."

Wall said the front desk workers at the hotel advised her to gas up elsewhere. 

"I feel bad for Oakland, I know from my in-laws and older relatives, it used to be a great place, it used to be a great place to live," Brentwood resident Lori Castro said, who also flew int the airport. 

Rumors had circulated about the Hilton closing in March. 

But when KTVU asked the hotel directly whether it planned to close, Hilton indicated that it was open, and staying open. 

A hotel spokeswoman emailed KTVU on March 28 saying, "Hilton Oakland Airport remains open and operational. Hilton continues to manage the property under the Hilton Hotels & Resorts flag. We remain fully committed to welcoming guests with the quality service and hospitality experience they have come to enjoy." 

Also in March, the now-embattled Mayor Sheng Thao held a news conference on Hegenberger promising to improve the area. 

"We are seeing crimes, whether it's burglary, property crimes, homicides, all in this corridor, they are trending down," Thao said. 

At the time, OPD said it had launched six foot patrol officers in the area and one sergeant. In addition, the Port of Oakland and the Alameda County Sheriff's Office launched eyes-in-the-sky surveillance cameras running 24 hours a day. 

Dhruv Patel, the president of Ridgemont Hospitality, said at that same news conference that he has seen overall improvement "in the corridor and city and state leaders are committed to building on that momentum." 

Violent crime has actually been trending downward in Oakland this year.