Popular SF street vending spot deserted on 1st day of permit enforcement

If a high number of street vendors switch neighborhoods, San Francisco's Department of Public Works says it will move accordingly.

J.R. Stone Image
Wednesday, September 14, 2022
Popular SF street vending spot empty on 1st day of permit enforcement
A popular street vending spot in San Francisco's Mission District was left deserted on Tuesday on the first day of permit enforcement.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- After weeks of warning street vendors about required permits, the City of San Francisco started enforcing rules Tuesday.

It's an effort to crack down on the sale of stolen goods and to try to make certain areas in San Francisco safer.

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In a video recorded Tuesday above the 24th and Mission BART station, no street vendors can be seen, the same area had dozens of street vendors Monday.

"This time yesterday we couldn't be talking right now because we'd be standing on top of somebody," said SFPD Sgt. Anthony Montoya.

The City of San Francisco is now requiring that vendors have permits to sell. The city's public works department, with the help of San Francisco police and Bart police, is now enforcing those permits at 24th and Mission, 16th and Mission, UN Plaza, and Chinatown.

"Very good now. Beautiful! Very nice," said Jose Noguera who lives in the Mission District. A translator told us he said, "he feels much safer now it's more clearer before it was too crowded, too dangerous, and afraid of getting stabbed."

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Noguera is well aware of the man who was killed in the area of 24th and Mission just two weeks ago.

But not everyone likes the idea of police enforcement here.

"People selling anything on the street should be able to sell anything on the street, just like because it's how they are probably going to eat that night," said Eric Faulkner who works in the Mission District.

41 permits to sell have been granted and officials are looking at others as they try to verify that the items aren't stolen.

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Crews tell us they didn't have to confiscate any items Tuesday or give out any citations.

"When we came out this morning there was one vendor and we showed up with the Department of Public Works. We never even had a chance to say good morning he packed up his goods on his own," said Sgt. Montoya.

"It certainly is better than we have seen in recent weeks," said Rachel Gordon with San Francisco's Public Works Department.

Those with the department of public works say they will have their crews in the city six days a week for enforcement and if a high number of street vendors switch neighborhoods, they will move accordingly.

For information on how to get a vendor permit, click here.

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