Letter to Planning Commission Re: Trader Joe’s at 555 Fulton

July 21, 2021

Dear San Francisco Planning Commission:

The Hayes Valley Small Business Association (HVSBA) does not support the proposal for a Trader Joe’s in Hayes Valley. Loopholes in the enforcement of Formula Retail Ban (FRB) have allowed for a significant increase in Formula Retail Chains. The economic impact of Covid-19 is facilitating the exploitation of those loopholes.

A chain store of this size coming to the neighborhood is alarming. The impact it will have on existing independent small businesses, traffic, parking and local hires gravely concerns us.  

555 Fulton was set to usher in a “family grocery store” – which Trader Joe’s definitively is not. A national chain with centralized purchasing and marketing power threatens the very foundation the merchant corridor of Hayes Valley was built upon. 

As our businesses struggle to recover from the impact of the pandemic, we are entering a critical period which will likely determine their survival as well as the character of our business community. Our organization, HVSBA, requests that you consider the additional stress of this weakening of the formula retail ban on our local merchants. 

Please reconsider this approval.