Lombardi’s Closing, Condos Planned To RiseSeptember 30, 2014
After 66 years in business, Lombardi Sports will be closing its doors at the corner of Jackson and Polk. And to answer a reader’s question, the plan is to demolish the existing two-story building at 1600 Jackson Street and construct a six-story building, with 62 condos over ground floor retail and underground parking, on the Nob Hill site.
While the plans for the proposed development have yet to be approved, the site is zoned for development up to 65-feet in height. We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.
Comments from Plugged-In Readers
Please please please don’t make it look like everything else being built in areas like Hayes valley. The new building on Pacific (between Pacific and Polk) and the new building on the corner of Polk and Pacific are pretty alright additions to the neighborhood. Let’s keep the character coming. We don’t want Polk to lose it’s character.
Odds are it’ll be a boring cookie-cutter value engineered box.
Funny, I just posted on the “Polk Gulch” piece about this – there are some great old examples of successful tall residential buildings, sprinkled throughout the City. Just last week I was walking above Cow Hollow (west of Gough, a few blocks above Union), and there is a beautiful ‘copse’ of 8, 9 and 10 story Art Deco buildings. They could never be built today, but I think they’re beautiful examples of urban architecture that are completely appropriate.
And yes, I think one of the keys to their beauty and success is that they’re not lot-line-to-lot-line walls of glass; they’re set back, with light wells and indentations and ornamentation – all of which make them less imposing, and more welcoming, than the modern and post-modern monoliths being built today.
Actually Lombardi’s has not been in this particular location for 66 years. This building was originally an auto dealer’s repair shop. It was vacant for some years before Lombardi moved in the 1990s/early 2000s – I don’t recall when exactly but I’m pretty sure it was after 1992 and definitely before 2007. They did quite a number on the structure to convert it into a sporting goods store. Before that they occupied a storefront on the second block of Clement, north side of the street.
There’s an article in The Chronicle about the closing of Lombardi’s and other local family owned stores.
Why can’t Lombardi’s relocate to Lombard where there are some underused commercial buildings, some of which are empty right now? (Click on name for article)
Lombardi’s on Lombard. Catchy!
Because they don’t want to stay in business? Jeez, let a person retire if they want to.
Lombardi’s was on Clement Street in the Inner Richmond before they moved to Polk. Another family owned store closing as the change keeps coming.
There is a big ugly parking lot in front of the Jug Shop and a paint store on Pacific at Polk. I would suspect its days are also numbered
I forgot to mention I am NOT in favor of Supervisor Campos’ plan to create tax incentives for these “legacy” retail establishments. How do they decide what is worthy and what is not? They mention the Tonga Room (yuck) and The Eagle (!?), but what if my family owned a gas station on Lombard for 60 years, would I be able to qualify? As mentioned earlier, this type of Nimbyism is surprisingly coming from the political Left as well as the Right.
A gas station definite qualify. Gas stations, donut shops, fast food joints, corrugated metal warehouse they all have their fans. Campos’s plan will provide basis for sentimental and based planning and obstruction to changes.
NIMBYism from the political Left surprises you? Really? I generally find most NIMBY’s are “progressives” who feel they need to tell the rest of us how to live (as most progressives tend to do).
Unlike conservatives? (don’t use birth control, don’t marry someone of the same sex, don’t make your own reproductive choices…)
We’re dealing within the context of NIMBYism as it applies to San Francisco real estate. try to keep up.
The most conservative area of the city is the Sunset, a neighborhood that has a collective heart attack any time something over 20′ in height is proposed, so I don’t think SF nimbyism is really a left/right thing.
The Campos “legacy” retail idea is insane, and a complete sop to anti-gentrification forces in the Mission. I happen to live in the Mission, and many of the legacy businesses he’s talking about deserve to close, or at least need to respond to the current market to remain relevant. I can’t wait til the man is no longer my Supervisor.
I can’t wait until he is no longer your supervisor as well. Of course, mine is Mar and he would be just as bad if he wasn’t so incompetent.
Well can they move back to Clement St then? The store vacant by Busvan has been sitting empty for a decade.
i would love that
“It’s because you people keep buying everything on Amazon Prime!”
(…clicks… searches for deals on running shoes on amazon…)
yeah…my last two pair of skis were bought on-line. I never found Lombardi’s to be particularly helpful. Much easier to go to a ski area, demo skis, then click and buy the pair you like.
Sad to see it go….
Yet, as noted above, retail is migrating to the web. And the Millenials who work for the companies destroying brick and mortar retail need housing. Of course, when professional and web jobs are replaced by AI or off-shored, who will be able to afford to live in the new housing, but…
Not quite. Sport Basements seem quite successful with multiple stores opened in the bay area.
Very much so. Sports Basement seems to be thriving. It has a strong following and customer base.
The Lombardi family does not want and does not need help from the city to decide what to do with its property. They do not see themselves as needing advice from Campos or other leftist-loonies. The article allows the reader to infer that Lombardis and the owners of Empress of China are closing involuntarily, but close reading reveals that the owners and tenants are the same or overlapped and they are maximizing their investments. The world changes and intelligent people respond in their own best interests.
Why all the right wing nonsense? Do I still live in the Bay Area?
what are you talking about, Chris VerPlanck?
Regardless of the merits of preserving family-owned businesses (they do keep more profits local; but even though I’m a leftie, I think that if they can’t make it in the free market, with their advantages in service and reputation, then they shouldn’t get government support to prop them up) – it’s ludicrous for Campos or anyone else to propose preserving this 2-story use on this prime central site.
I agree. The government has no business “preserving” them. They either make it financially or they don’t.
“Keep more profits local” – not sure what this means exactly. We have many non-family-owned businesses that have certainly had much, MUCH larger impact in keeping more profits local, by bringing in profits from other places.
SF is one of the largest creators of chain stores – I can understand the desire to focus on local businesses in a place that doesn’t create many national/international businesses, but that ain’t us.
Soon all we will have left are fashion retail stores (who have so far survived online commerce competition) and a few big box chains that can compete with Amazon. Just look at Union Square, almost everything is fashion related except Apple. As for Empress of China, the Chinese food there was barely edible. It was the place you had to book for a wedding or fundraiser, then gag on the food.
As much as I will miss Lombardi’s glad to see this. I am concerned however that 6 stories will create shadows for the cyclists in the forthcoming bike lanes and wondering if the quality of the biking experience would be enhanced with a 2- or 3-story building.
I can’t tell if this is:
I am going with A perceived as B.
The earnestness only ENHANCES the sarcasm and trolling experience. But don’t publicize this, or the language will appear in the CEQA lawsuits!
How soon until perceived shadow is added to CEQA
this is clearly a joke, but it is pretty funny.no doubt some cyclists will probably complain
I’m quite sad about this. I’m all for new housing, but honestly, is EVERYBODY buying their sh!t online these days? I am a loyal customer to Lombardi’s and their convenience was a big part of that.
sports basement’s prices are lower, they have more selection. i buy there over amazon, because its really price competitive and i like walking out of the store with stuff. i never understood how lombardis was competing with the basement. prices were 10-20% higher, service worse and parking more difficult
One time while shopping there I heard from and employee that their pay parking garage was the most profitable part of the whole operation. (Of course you get 2 hours free is you make a purchase). After the on street parking is removed on Polk for bike lanes their parking garage could have been a mini gold mine.
Have not been here in YEARS , Sad another San Francisco Old School is closing , But there are other retail spaces open to be leased
I dont feel all that terrible for Lombardi. They own the building and are walking away with $17M+
Sports Basement is locally owned and is a fantastic citizen to the community. They have 2 locations in the city (North & South). I recommend that you shift your loyalties to Sports Basement, if you want to buy local. Housing is needed and Polk is one block off a major transit corridor. It is a sensible place to build transit oriented housing. Polk Street is a great commercial street off the heavily trafficked Van Ness. People are finally seeing that there is no reason that Polk should be underutilized. I agree with the others above, let the Lombardi’s decide if they want to capitalize on a prime time to exit.
l love Lombardi’s, but don’t see this project being opposed on any aesthetic grounds. Just refer to the twenty foot-tall box of a building adorned with a fifth graders art final slapped on it (he/she received a c grade) in the picture above. Until I moved two blocks away from that intersection, I was under the impression that murals such as this were reserved for neighborhoods with a minimum of 2x the average city homicide rate. I hope they don’t rent out the retail level to j-crew, pottery barn, or some other business of that ilk though. Maybe they can hire the same artist to redo the mural on the new condos. It would be better now that he or she may have learned perspective drawing.
Anyone know how you can find out how much they sold their property for? I always wonder if they were approached by a developer or what. I just picture developers going door to door offering money to property owners. I’d be curious as to how much they go to sell it.
Whats the appeal of all these new “flats above a shop” anyway…?
What’s the appeal of having to drive everywhere?
The Queen, Prince Charles, Prince William, the Duke of Gloucester and some others of her family live above a variety of “shops”. Depends on the shops and the flats.
New? Seriously? Mixed use buildings have been being built in SF and plenty of other cities for centuries.
It’s a bunch of new condos, is it not? That’s what I was referring to.
Just do’t get the appeal, but as a Brit I just see them as “flats above a shop” I guess – as referenced in Pulp, Common People…
Who the buyer/developer is? What is being used to substantiate the claim that there will be condos going up there?
UPDATE: Prohibition on Formula Retail Likely for Polk, but with a Big Twist
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