About 30 firefighters from the Berkeley Fire Department and the East Bay Regional Park District battled the blaze, located just west of Interstate 80, north of the Berkeley Marina and south of the Tom Bates soccer fields.
The smoke was visible – and smellable – for many miles.
Berkeley Assistant Fire Chief Aaron Lee said the call came in 4:16 p.m., and that the blaze had been knocked down within about 45 minutes. Hot spots continued to smolder for a few hours afterward, and firefighers remained on the scene dousing them.
The cause of the fire was not determined and remains under investigation, Lee said. No injuries were reported.
There are a number of homeless encampments in the area, and one of them may have been the source, said Capt. Brian Cordeiro of the East Bay parks district fire department.
"It's possible it's a homeless encampment, but we're not sure yet," he said.
East Bay parks fire Lt. Mike Sweany said the blaze consumed two acres.
Frontage Road next to the freeway, which is normally busy during the afternoon rush hour, was closed to traffic between University and Gilman avenues, adding extra snarls to the commute.
The burned area is part of McLaughlin Eastshore State Park, supervised by the East Bay parks district.
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