Potential for Whole Foods and Formula Retail on Polk RemainsJune 3, 2016
While San Francisco’s Planning Department had recommended the City’s Planning Commission support a modified prohibition on new Formula Retail establishments along the Polk Street corridor, with an exception for developments where the ratio of residential uses to new formula retail was at least 3:1, the Commission voted 4 to 3 against supporting the proposed ban yesterday afternoon.
San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors could still adopt the proposed Planning Code amendment without the Commission’s support, but that’s unlikely to happen. The language for a reworked amendment, however, is still likely to emerge.
And with respect to Whole Foods 365 taking over the shuttered Lombardi Sports site at 1600 Jackson Street, the plans for which sparked the proposed formula retail ban, it remains a possibility and a conditional use hearing is now likely to determine its fate.
Comments from Plugged-In Readers
Seems pointless given there is already another Whole Foods at California and Franklin which is only a 15 minute walk away
a 15 minute walk with groceries is not doable for a lot of people
By “a lot of people” do you mean disabled people? Who else is not capable of walking 15 minutes? Or perhaps you meant parking issues? So maybe locals who don’t own cars can walk 5 minutes instead of 15?
I am still not seeing the justification for another chain store at this intersection when there is already one a few blocks away
And so the other one will close and something else will open there? Seems crazy to block something because you assume to know more about the market than the company actually operating both stores.
15 minutes with 3 bags of groceries?
My spouse and I go to the gym 5 times a week, we also walk everywhere (much more than even your typical active San Franciscan or New Yorker). But, like most people, except to pick up the occasional gallon of milk, we only go grocery shopping once a week. And, even though we typically eat out three times a week, we still full at least a dozen bags (often more) every week we go to the grocery store.
Even being the fit and active people we are, we could not reasonably lug over a dozen full bags of groceries on a 15 (or even 5) minute walk.
So, no, even for able-bodied locals who don’t drive all over the city, walking 15 minutes to a grocery store for weekly shopping is not possible.
Also, a developer does not need to justify to you or anyone whether a particular store is needed. If the zoning allows a particular use, it is allowed, end of story (hence the push to try to change the rules and block the store). If a store is truly not needed, the market will work its magic and the store will quickly go out of business.
over 55 yr olds and many women would have a problem carrying 2 full bags of groceries for 15 minutes without taking a lot of stops. 5 versus 15 is a big difference.
I am 6’1, 45 and weigh 200lbs. I live 15 minutes from trader joe’s and love it a lot. However, I live 7 mins from Cala Foods and about 6 from Smart and Final. I dislike both of those grocery stores, but i shop there much more often because of the walk.
I generally buy more than 2 bags of groceries on a weekly basis. My wife makes me pick up groceries either on foot or via car because she cannot carry.
Haven’t you people heard of Instacart? Over here in civilization… we have delivery. “Walking with groceries” is a problem that was solved a century ago.
Jimmy, I hate to disappoint you but grocery delivery predates Instacart (or Amazon Fresh, etc) by over 100 years. Having your groceries delivered is expensive (biggest problem), often requires that you arrange to be home for the delivery or risk having your food sit outside (and even though ice packs may be used, in the “civilization” of SF, you may find your food stolen or worse), and more often than not does not give you exactly what you would have picked out yourself (another huge problem for many people).
Yes, for some people, grocery delivery is the answer, but obviously for most people it is not, or else grocery stores would have disappeared over 100 years ago.
I use it quite a bit… I place the Instacart order before I leave work and by the time I’ve sat in traffic for 40+ minutes, the groceries are almost at my door. What a great time-saver and the best part is the pickers who pack the grocery bags are actually much better at choosing ripe unblemished avocadoes and other fruits than I am. So it is definitely working for me and I suspect I’m not alone.
Isn’t WF 365 targeted to a somewhat different customer from regular WF?
UPDATE: Plans for the First Whole Foods 365 in SF Slated for Approval
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