San Francisco holds hearing over proposed Jack Spade store


San Francisco's Mission District is full of small independent businesses like Mission Bicycles on Valencia Street.

"This area is sort of like a wildlife preserve; the city has designated it a safe zone for small businesses," Jefferson McCarley said.

Jefferson Mccarley is talking about the city's so-called formula retail regulations which make it hard for large chain stores to move in to some neighborhoods by requiring any retailer with more than 11 locations in the United States, to undergo a special hearing.

That did not happen with Jack Spade, a men's store that wants to move in to a space on 16th Street.

The luxury retailer says it has only 10 other spots, but opponents say not true, that Jack Spade is pulling a fast one.

"We believe they are an off-shoot of Kate Spade, which has 100 stores in the U.S. They clearly qualify as formula retail in San Francisco," Mission resident Kyle Smeallie said.

Opponents, like the manager of the Serendipity Card Shop, want Jack Spade's permit reconsidered and to allow the public to weigh in on the store.

The owner of the vintage clothing store next door to the site has already seen her rent rise and says allowing the retailer in could force her out..

"I'm not trying to go against them, but I'm trying to maintain what I have; I've worked hard for it," Delores Amantea said.

But the manager of the Gestalt beer bar across the street is all for allowing the new business in the neighborhood.

"I'm looking forward to it," Ryan Blumenthal said. "I think it'll improve the block. I can't wait."

Jack Spade has not commented on the hearing. Both sides will present letters of support at the hearing.

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