As we first reported, while San Francisco’s Planning Department backs the proposal to convert the Pacific Sales building at 975 Bryant into a Orchard Supply Hardware store, noting that the project “is desirable for, and compatible with the surrounding neighborhood,” would “[improve] the pedestrian experience along Bryant Street” and “meets all applicable requirements of the Planning Code,” following public testimony, San Francisco’s Planning Commission adopted a motion of Intent to Disapprove the project.
Who are the NIMBYs with which the Planning Commission is siding and for whom they intend to block the compatible project? A plugged-in reader reports:
“The majority of comments were from various business owners (Cole Hardware, Builder Supply, Center Hardware, etc.) who expressed their usual concerns about how formula retail will put them out of business and change the face of San Francisco forever.
The owner of Cole Hardware claimed his business went down 25% after Lowes opened on Bayshore — (in the middle of the recession). The owner of Center claims his Saturday business is still down 20%. Of course there’s no way to check their numbers and Center has so little weekend business they don’t even open on Sunday.
The best comment from a commissioner: “We’re trying to save ourselves from ourselves” referring to people who say they want to support locally owned businesses but drive to Home Depot anyway.”
Should it be the role of San Francisco’s Planning Commission to decide and dictate which businesses in San Francisco deserve protection from their competition and their customers as well?