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Grocery Outlet to open in former Delano’s location at 28th & Geary

It’s taken nearly two years but Supervisor Eric Mar’s office will announce tomorrow that Grocery Outlet has signed a lease on the former Delano’s Market property at 6333 Geary Boulevard. Delano’s closed in December 2010 after filing for bankruptcy.

Grocery Outlet is a family run business, known for their value pricing and “bargain market” tagline. They offer “brand name products at up to 50% off conventional retail prices” according to their website.

Headquartered in Berkeley, California, Grocery Outlet’s holdings include 185 stores in Arizona, California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Pennsylvania. Most stores are independently operated by locally-based families.

This will be the chain’s first store in the city of San Francisco. The closest current Grocery Outlet is on Hickey Boulevard in South San Francisco.

“Grocery Outlet started in San Francisco 65 years ago and we are delighted to be coming back home,” said Grocery Outlet Co-CEO MacGregor Read. “Our customers have come to expect quality, variety and value at our stores and we will be offering the same to San Francisco shoppers.”

This should set up an interesting competitive dynamic with the Fresh & Easy market that opened on 32nd and Clement – just 6 blocks away – in June 2011.

No word yet on when Grocery Outlet will open the doors on its 12,360-square-foot store. There will be a press conference on Wednesday at 12noon to announce the new tenancy; perhaps we’ll find out then.

UPDATE: Grocery Outlet plans to open in early to mid 2013. According to Paul Lauterborn of Supervisor Mar’s office, “They need to do some serious renovations to make the site ready and attractive.”

Glad to see this empty space getting filled!

Sarah B.

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68 Comments

  1. Me too. I am never embarrassed to bring friends and family from other parts of the country. I see a part of the city that is alive with energy and so do they. I think that our large immigrant population makes it more open and certainly diverse. I lived in a great, planned community in the Austin metro. But, barely knew my neighbors. I don’t miss it (OK, I do miss have more than one bathroom and my really big kitchen, but not enough to trade). Here on my block, I know more neighbors than my previous locale and there is always a friendly wave and hello. I cannot think of a better neighborhood in which to live and more importantly, a better place in the U.S. and maybe the world.

  2. I looked up my own census tract. Almost 6% decline in population 2000-2010.

    Inasmuch as there have been changes in my area, it’s been the addition of garages to garage-less houses, and older houses with illegal inlaws and such being remodeled to the nines with the inlaws being eliminated (after all, the people who can afford over a million dollars for a house aren’t interested in navigating the weird waters of SF rent laws).

    So it makes perfect sense to me that the commercial areas are in decline. Their customers are disappearing from the neighborhood, and the people moving in have easy access to cars, and are more likely to go to Costco or Stonestown than the small shops a few blocks away.

    Some commenters here have proposed “magnet” businesses, but this seems like wishful thinking to me. Where are these customers supposed to be coming from? Neighborhoods with their own struggling businesses. We can’t expect to survive at the expense of others.

    “I want a proper quality and selection supermarket I can walk to.”

    Well, supermarkets want customers, and the customers are driving elsewhere.

  3. Pam, you wrote my comment for me (love Grocery Outlet, started shopping at the old one 28 years ago, then at all the surrounding ones). I’m thrilled they’ll be in the Richmond soon. Can’t wait for them to open. Hope they’ll have as great of a wine section as the GCs in Oakland and Redwood City. They also have great bargains on schampoos etc, vitamins, cleaning products, and so much more. Hardly ever buy produce there though, will continue at the one at Geary and 4th. As a single person I don’t like having to buy a bag of 8 bananas, e.g. Trader Joe’s my banana place. :-)

  4. There goes my dream of having a weekly Outer Richmond farmers’ market in the parking lot. I guess I will stick to getting my veggies from my CSA (get more info at http://www.localharvest.org/csa/ ) and farmers’ markets in other neighborhoods. Instead of going to big box stores (Target, etc) support local stores. Green 11 and Other Avenues are good resources for laundry detergent, shampoo, olive oil, spices, etc. They are not in the Richmond, but fairly close by in the Sunset. I take the 44 Muni to get to Green 11 and the 18 Muni to get to Other Avenues.

  5. @ Alai on decline in population. In 1996-2001 we had a dot boom that then went bust. The whole city had been bursting at the seams. You could not find a place for rent in a garage. Remember the crowds in restaurants? The rudeness? The total lack of service? SF jazz groups and places like Finocchio loosing rent and closing or leaving for Mendocino? If this is what you are referring as a “past its peak”, well yes. That peak had passed with a major exist of migrant IT workers, and I do not miss them much, personally. Also during dot.boom we had a surplus of older folk deposited in Outer Richmond by their adult kids, who lived and worked in Silicon valley and took their kids to schools there. Their non English speaking, and not working older parents lived here where transport, social services, JCS, and local small cheeper produce shops are. Such older population dwindles from natural causes if nothing else. This is a family type neighborhood, mostly middles class and affluent who do not want to live in high density housing. And it is hard to attract families to buy here because of the school bussing and lack of shopping, horrid parking and the rest. Attracting more people just to have more people does not give you prosperity it gives you congestion.
    SF has been hoovering around the same number of high 700 for 50 years with some ups and downs. It changed only by 4.6% in the last 10 years.
    2000 776,733 +7.3%
    2010 805,235 +3.7%
    2011 812,826 +0.9%

    Having said that – I actually for attracting more residents to the neighborhood . The question for me is whom and how we are going to accommodate such increase.

  6. @ALY – a citywide increase of 5% compared to our decrease of 5% in only 10 years is HUGE.

    I also disagree with your notion that the city has hovered around high 700s for 50 years. Census numbers:

    1960: 740,316
    1970: 715,674
    1980: 678,974
    1990: 723,959
    2000: 776,733
    2010: 805,235

    You have to go back to 1950 for any number in the high 700s until 2000. What I see is a city that emptied out and then has been growing again since the early 80s. It is extremely disturbing to see our neighborhood on the outside of that citywide trend, as that means that new businesses are even less likely to look at us to open in (because why open in the declining neighborhood when most of the city is booming?) Finding a way to stabilize our population should be the number one concern of our supervisor, as it relates directly to the other problems like the lack of grocery stores discussed in this thread.

  7. @ Bill Actually we are not outside citywide trend, as the numbers you quote reflect population explosion in South of Market from ~21K in 2000, to 44.5K by 2010. + ~10 K growth in Tenderloin.

  8. @ALY – I have no idea where you’re getting ~10k growth in the Tenderloin during that time period (???), but even if true, you’re showing that most of the growth in the city has been in those two areas. But remember – we SHRANK by 5% during that time. Unless you can show another 35k in growth in those two areas, we know that we shrank while most other areas were stable. We’re dying out here, while the rest of the city booms or is at least stable.

  9. This is not a win. We are being given a ghetto grocery store which will do nothing but devalue our properties. A City Supervisor should ‘sell’ his district to businesses to locate in our neighborhood. Eric Mar should have been on a plane, in the faces of the Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods execs, selling them on the promise of our neighborhood and giving them juicy incentives to do so. Sorry but poor people can move to the bay view or hunters point.

  10. Vaughn, please explain your use of the term “ghetto grocery store”. Have you ever been to a Grocery Outlet? If yes, what didn’t you like about it?

  11. Meh, I’ll reserve the judgment until I see it. Happy that there’ll be an alternative to Fresh & Easy in the neighborhood, though. I tried shopping over there a couple of times, but their “fresh” ain’t so, and I’m really suspicious about their “organic”… Every time we prepared food from Fresh & Easy, my entire household got stomach upset.

    Either way, I’m sticking mostly to our fabulous small stores – the Irish bakery & the kosher store near Geary & 20th, Abel’s, Thom’s, Chico’s on 23rd & Clement & the Chinese butcher next to ’em.

  12. Grant, why would we want people to come from other neighborhoods to the Richmond for the purpose of food shopping? What benefit is that to this neighborhood?

  13. When people spend money at local businesses, this contributes to the local economy. People coming from outside the neighborhood to spend money at one store might even spend their disposable income at other local stores.

  14. Nice to see something coming to the former Delano’s location. It’s better than a vacant space, constantly marked up by taggers.

    That said, I don’t see this business as adding anything unique, in terms of retail diversity, to the Richmond.

    One of the posts above mentioned the old Alexandria Theater. When are we going to see that space up and running?

    Supervisor Mar: It’s time to start looking into getting REALLY tough on commercial landlords who let their vacant spaces lie fallow for YEARS. Might I suggest introducing a city ordnance that permits the city to fine landlords who let their properties lie vacant, the equivalent rent that they charged their last tenant, for every month over one year’s vacancy. There is simply no excuse – other than convenient tax write-offs for commercial landlords to let the neighborhood properties they own lie fallow and contribute to decay.

    As for the Alexandria, by now, our city should have repossessed that building and told the owner where to go. As far as I’m concerned, whoever owns that property has done little more than consciously devalue our neighborhood. There should be penalties for that!!

  15. Living here all my life, I guess there’s no point dwelling on the past and how things “used” to be. But I’d say about after the 80’s things have kind of gone downhill as far as shops/merchants in the area. It seems like as regular stores like Grocery stores, shoe stores, etc. would close, they would be taken over by “junk” stores or as if they’re all like 99 cent store in a way.. Just kind of a depressed feeling.\. It used to be fun to go shopping on Clement when they had novelty stores, nice clothing stores and more. (Not to mention some stores that I walk by every day on Geary and I swear I’ve never seen 1 customer in them, yet somehow they are able to remain open – gee, I wonder how that works.) Point is, iwe used to have a lot more interesting stores where you’d be able to shop the neighborhood stores and pretty much buy everthing you needed. Not having a car I end up buying most things online since they’re not available in the neighborhood. The produce markets are great. .. As far as Grocery Outlet, I haven’t been to one so I can’t speak about it but I hope it isn’t a place that just sells old stock .. like a thriftshop for groceries. If it turns out to be that, then I guess it’ll be another place I wouldn’t shop at. As to some other open storefronts, perhaps if the Supervisor didn’t “Ban” everything in site that he doesn’t like, maybe things would improve quicker.

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