Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by veteran+ »

storewanderer wrote: August 13th, 2022, 1:43 pm
veteran+ wrote: August 13th, 2022, 11:23 am It is a more realistic measurement when it is per capita instead of these hyperbolic over reported end of the world scenarios that focuses on the usual suspects (blue city sodom and gomorrah).
The issue is more the impact it has on the people who live in a given place. Even if some manipulated statistic (in this case, using per capita) makes you feel like somehow this is a bigger problem in those little small states back east or the big not dense states elsewhere, the impact this has on the overall environment is different in those places than it is in San Francisco (or Portland...). The problem in places like San Francisco is that this problem is so pervasive that it IS impacting just about everyone who lives in these cities because the side effects caused by this problem, is causing large sections of the city to turn into an unlivable situation. This is a retail thread. Stores are closing in San Francisco because of this problem. I don't see chain retailers closing this number of stores in MT, VT, CT, WV, MI, NH, or any other state on that list because of the circumstances stores are being closed in San Francisco for... people are leaving the big cities. We can place the blame on whatever we want but people are leaving these big cities, retailers are leaving, tourists are not coming back as often, and the convention business has dried up. It is fine if you don't want to blame the leadership of these cities (in this case, elected officials, primarily affiliated with a specific political party) for what is happening, maybe they just got dealt a bad deck of cards, you know, like a good store manager who gets moved to a store with a terrible crew, I guess. But that good store manager should be able to at least stem the declines to a degree even with a terrible crew, over time; through attrition and trying to mend the situation to improve the existing crew. But these big cities are just getting worse and worse... and EVERY store closure just pushes the decline further.
Manipulated?

Hardly. I found similar statistics from several sources.

Google can be your friend.
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by veteran+ »

Apocalypse, end of the world, armageddon in Blue cities.

It's exhausting and never ending. It would be nice to hear over reporting and hyperbole on something else once in a while.

🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by storewanderer »

veteran+ wrote: August 14th, 2022, 8:59 am Apocalypse, end of the world, armageddon in Blue cities.

It's exhausting and never ending. It would be nice to hear over reporting and hyperbole on something else once in a while.

🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️
This is referring to San Francisco, not all "blue cities." But just about every major US city is "blue" and has been for decades so I am not sure what you are trying to imply here. Unless you feel somehow that "blue cities" have some specific unique problems just because they are "blue."

Find another "blue city" or any city for that matter where the Target stores close at 6 PM, have multiple entire aisles locked up throughout the store, and Target Corporation doesn't even have the stores on their store directory online (must not want outside customers to know the stores exist and see what they are like). Find another city that has had such a high volume of crime driven store closure activity over the past few years as San Francisco has. There isn't one. Ever. Over time you could go back and study some other cities like Oakland and various in the midwest with their "food deserts" and I think the same circumstances that caused those issues with food deserts is exactly what is happening to retail at large in San Francisco at the present time.

There are problems in Portland and Seattle, yes. Some retailers have closed in those cities but crime hasn't been cited as the reason in most cases (like Macy's, but that is a weak retailer on the decline and has closed a lot of stores all over- those stores were certainly poorly performing with too much space and too few customers). Amazon Go did "temporarily" close a store in downtown Seattle last week for safety reasons... but is that really even a loss? But other retailers are continuing to open new stores in those cities, in the heart of the very areas that have "problems." New CVS in Portland, new H-Mart locations in Seattle, etc. Further you do not see retailers making the stores look like fort knox in Portland or Seattle. Sure you see some locking cases, but you see locking cases in many retail stores all over the US in any major metro area. You don't see entire aisles of under $10 products on lockdown.

I do think if the employers would band together and force everyone back to their offices in the city, they could somewhat quickly reverse the city's fortunes. But I am not sure people would comply with such an order. It is so bad in San Francisco, if 40% of the workforce who has been working from home for the past 2.5 years and told they are working successfully, refuses to comply, these employers are stuck and the city is basically screwed. Over time they could perhaps fire those employees who refuse to come to the office and find other employees who are willing to come to the office but you can't do it all at once. Not even the City employees in San Francisco have been fully required to return to the office yet. NYC forced them all back long ago and many other employers followed there.
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by veteran+ »

Well, it seems to you and others and the media writ large, perhaps we should burn the city down.

After all, IT is SO singularly BAD, how can anyone even breath oxygen.

Everything there is so horrific, right?

:shock: :shock: :shock:
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by mbz321 »

storewanderer wrote: August 14th, 2022, 11:15 am
I do think if the employers would band together and force everyone back to their offices in the city, they could somewhat quickly reverse the city's fortunes. But I am not sure people would comply with such an order. It is so bad in San Francisco, if 40% of the workforce who has been working from home for the past 2.5 years and told they are working successfully, refuses to comply, these employers are stuck and the city is basically screwed. Over time they could perhaps fire those employees who refuse to come to the office and find other employees who are willing to come to the office but you can't do it all at once. Not even the City employees in San Francisco have been fully required to return to the office yet. NYC forced them all back long ago and many other employers followed there.
So we should force employers to make their employees come into the office just so the corner Walgreens can stay in business? :lol:
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by Alpha8472 »

In 2019, before the pandemic San Francisco was a bustling city. Tourists filled the streets and restaurants were packed with people. Stores were filled with customers. Walgreens was packed shoulder to shoulder with tons of customers. At lunch time thousands of office workers and tech workers crowded the streets and the economy was booming. San Francisco was rich with tons of tax money.

Uber and Lyft cars crowded the streets. Bars were busy every night and theaters all over the city were packed. Life was exciting and care free. The homeless were here, but the crowds pushed them to the bad neighborhoods mostly away from the restaurants and shopping districts.

When there were lots of tourists around, you felt safe. Then the pandemic hit and the tourists disappeared along with the lunch time crowds. The homeless took over and openly camped out where the tourists once visited.

Crime such as theft went up. The streets became very unsafe due to the lack of tourists and office workers. You used to be able to go out at night and still have a reasonably safe time with all of the people around.

If the pandemic had never happened the theft and crime would be lower. The stores such as Walgreens would have had more customers, which would offset the shoplifting and many of those stores would still be here.

If the office workers would come back, it would provide enough business so that many of these stores would not need to close.

I wish life would get back to what it used to be. San Francisco despite its leadership has many wonderful places to visit. There is so much to see and do.

Companies need to give incentives for workers to go back to the office. Free food or snacks will attract them back. Employees who go back to the office are more productive and make the company more profit. Punishment is not an effective means of encouraging employees to go back to the office.
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by storewanderer »

veteran+ wrote: August 14th, 2022, 12:59 pm Well, it seems to you and others and the media writ large, perhaps we should burn the city down.

After all, IT is SO singularly BAD, how can anyone even breath oxygen.

Everything there is so horrific, right?

:shock: :shock: :shock:
You don't need to burn the city down. You need to get control over what is going on in the city so it becomes a desirable place to live in, work in, travel to, and do business in again. Well, not you, but the city leadership. At this point it is failing on all points.

But from a higher level, the impact this has on retailers in the city interests me. Retailers are doing things not done anywhere else, ever, to try to combat the current environment for self serve chain retail stores in that city.
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by storewanderer »

mbz321 wrote: August 14th, 2022, 5:35 pm

So we should force employers to make their employees come into the office just so the corner Walgreens can stay in business? :lol:
It is the whole city. They need the office worker traffic back. It starts with the mass transit, the office spaces, the chain retailers, the small businesses.

San Francisco has been the slowest of the major cities for people to return to the office. I don't think any major cities have fully recovered by any stretch but if you look at return to office statistics, San Francisco has a lower uptake of returning to office than any other city. And this starts with the folks who work for the city government in San Francisco who to this point have not had to go back to the office as a whole. Not saying other employers will follow but it may motivate some (frankly, I wouldn't if I were a major employer; I'd happily keep everyone remote or move the office to a safer location, unless enough of my employees lived in the city that it made sense to continue there).
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by buckguy »

The only article I could find regarding San Francisco being slower to recover than other places mentioned two metrics: Office vacancies and transit usage. There were no comparators for transit in other cites, but there were for office vacancies where SF was at about 24% vs. 21-22% in Atlanta and Chicago; NYC was much lower. Chicago has a fairly diversified downtown economy and a lot of people live there. Atlanta's downtown has been struggling for decades. Neither is a tech hub--Atlanta used to have a sizable tech sector but it was in the suburbs and vaporized in the 2000s. Chicago's tech is in the suburbs. Atlanta has an overheated residential real estate market though still more affordable than SF, Chicago isn't getting any cheaper but isn't as overheated and is more affordable than SF. In other words SF isn't doing much different than places that have very different economies.

I've been to San Francisco many times since the 90s. I haven't been in the last couple years but regularly talk to people who work there and either live in the city or in places like Oakland or inner area suburbs. They are far less apocalyptic than what I see here and almost all of them have lived for a couple decades or more and include people who work not far from the Tenderloin. The Tenderloin itself has shrunk since the 90s--ever smaller on every trip I've made although it's always brushed up against the Union Square area--if you go out the back of the Hilton, you're in the Tenderloin. A number of people have said they think the techies thought they could just gentrify the Tenderloin out of existence, except many of the remaining buildings are owned by social service orgs or are protected by rent control or long-term housing subsidies. The Tenderloin isn't going anywhere and never was, even if a few buildings did come on the market. It isn't like the Bowery in NYC which is now unrecognizable and has lost its lighting and electronics businesses as well as its flophouses.

I have been to New York City three times in the last two years and have watched it gradually come back to life--the tourist traps had plenty of people when I was there in the Spring, but the convention trade had not picked-up yet. During that time, I've sometimes heard dire things about the Penn Station area, but frankly it didn't seem much different from before and it certainly is nothing like the bad old days in the 80s. Neighborhoods like the Upper West Side have their old vitality and it's rare to see retail vacancies. The closing of downtown businesses has happened in DC---CVS closed a couple stores in the downtown area and also in an area close to the World Bank and George Washington University---mostly stores that seemed like under performers anyway. Places stay vacant longer than in the past, but have been starting to fill-up again. Cities seem to be surviving.
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Re: Walgreens Closures Continue in San Francisco

Post by storewanderer »

buckguy wrote: August 15th, 2022, 10:15 am The only article I could find regarding San Francisco being slower to recover than other places mentioned two metrics: Office vacancies and transit usage. There were no comparators for transit in other cites, but there were for office vacancies where SF was at about 24% vs. 21-22% in Atlanta and Chicago; NYC was much lower. Chicago has a fairly diversified downtown economy and a lot of people live there. Atlanta's downtown has been struggling for decades. Neither is a tech hub--Atlanta used to have a sizable tech sector but it was in the suburbs and vaporized in the 2000s. Chicago's tech is in the suburbs. Atlanta has an overheated residential real estate market though still more affordable than SF, Chicago isn't getting any cheaper but isn't as overheated and is more affordable than SF. In other words SF isn't doing much different than places that have very different economies.



The article you are referring to is here:
https://www.cnbc.com/2022/07/21/san-fra ... iness.html

The number that is relevant here for a retail message board is the one that says this:
"The average daily ridership on Bay Area Rapid Transit plunged from over 400,000 in 2019 to under 80,000 last year. As of May, the number had ticked up to close to 136,000 per weekday, according to BART’s website."

Basic retail is that you need foot traffic to survive. If foot traffic falls off, it becomes much more difficult to survive.

If you are a retailer and there are this many thousands of fewer potential customers coming around as foot traffic, you have a problem. If the foot traffic that remains is increasingly made up of thieves, and there are fewer paying customers around, you get what we have now in San Francisco. Target Stores closing at 6 PM with entire aisles of low value goods locked up, customers increasingly frustrated at these Target and Walgreens Stores with everything being locked up and as they stand there waiting for cases to be unlocked, they observe shoplifters show up and fill up giant reusable bags or other large bags with stuff that isn't locked up and run out the door (videos all over Youtube...). Also that Safeway on Market Street closing at 9 PM... none of this is normal. This is not happening anywhere else in the US on this scale.

And it doesn't appear to be getting better anytime soon in terms of foot traffic coming back for the retailers. According to the article:
"Salesforce, San Francisco’s largest employer, said last week it was cutting its office space in the city yet again, and is now listing 40% of a 43-story building that’s across the street from the main Salesforce Tower. closed its San Francisco office last year, and pushed its return to office until 2023 at the earliest."

So it is simple: these retailers must gain control over the theft situation. Limited hours, everything locked up, is not a sustainable strategy. It will only drive more customers away. It is just another friction point of living or doing business in this city. People will just leave when you combine the lousy retail stores with various other issues, eventually you hit a tipping point of frustration...
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