Whole Foods Is Shuttering Its Flagship Store in San Francisco Just a Year After It Opened

(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara, File)

Whole Foods opened its 64,000+ square foot “flagship” store in downtown San Francisco in March of 2022. On Monday, the grocery giant announced it was shuttering that location — at least for now.

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“We are closing our Trinity location only for the time being,” a Whole Foods spokesperson said in a statement. “If we feel we can ensure the safety of our team members in the store, we will evaluate a reopening of our Trinity location.”

A City Hall source told The Standard the company cited deteriorating street conditions around drug use and crime near the grocery store as a reason for its closure.

The closing is reflective of the struggles many retailers have experienced, particularly since the COVID pandemic.

Since the start of the pandemic, Downtown has suffered a massive loss in foot traffic due to remote work and many small businesses have shuttered. Fears of a “doom loop” in which a cascade of negative financial impacts compound have spread across the city. City Hall officials currently expect a nearly $800 million deficit in San Francisco’s budget.

As indicated in the statement from Whole Foods, safety is a serious concern.

The beleaguered grocery store on Market Street slashed its operating hours due to “high theft” and hostile visitors in October last year, according to one of the store’s managers. And in November, the store enforced new bathroom rules after syringes and pipes were found in the restroom.

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San Francisco Board of Supervisors member Matt Dorsey, whose district includes the closing store, tweeted about his disappointment regarding the news of the closure.

“I’m incredibly disappointed but sadly unsurprised by the temporary closure of Mid-Market’s Whole Foods,” Dorsey stated. He added: “Our neighborhood waited a long time for this supermarket, but we’re also well aware of problems they’ve experienced with drug-related retail theft, adjacent drug markets, and the many safety issues related to them.”

Dorsey indicated he would be introducing legislation designed to increase staffing in the city’s police department. Dorsey’s proposed legislation echoes the recent move by Mayor London Breed to request federal assistance in the face of an “unprecedented police staffing shortage.” Ironic given Breed’s stance just three short years ago. Author and independent journalist Michael Shellenberger — most recently a contributor to the Twitter Files and witness before Congress regarding same — noted as much in response to her plea for assistance.

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Three years ago, San Francisco Mayor @LondonBreed announced a plan to defund the police. Now, with the city short 540 police officers, and a rapidly growing area controlled by violent drug dealers, the mayor is finally asking the federal government to help.

In response to Monday’s news regarding the Whole Foods closure, Shellenberger observed:

San Francisco politicians and the local news media say crime isn’t increasing, but Whole Foods begs to differ. Today Whole Foods announced that it is abandoning its one-year-old flagship store downtown because of crime and rampant drug dealing.

San Francisco is a failed city. It cannot protect the safety of its residents, tourists, or businesses. Gov. @GavinNewsom needs to halt his presidential run and send in the national guard to shut down the dangerous and deadly open air drug markets.

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Newsom hasn’t responded as of yet, but it appears he’s busy on Spring Break in the Bahamas.

Meanwhile:

In San Francisco, Getting Your Car Broken Into Isn’t a Crime — It’s an Experience!

Even CNN Isn’t Safe on the Streets of San Francisco

Former San Francisco fire commissioner attacked with crowbar day after Bob Lee stabbed to death

 

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