What happened to Adobe Books
|Photo by Brett Lockspeiser|
A comment to the recent New Yorker article on chain stores in San Francisco:
ksmeallie Sep 20, 2013
Disclosing from the outset that I'm working on this campaign. Thank you for writing. I'd like to note one matter of clarity on how the property came into Jack Spade's hands, because it speaks to why people in the Mission District, not just small business owners, have become animated on the issue.
Adobe Books is the former tenant. This past year, Adobe's landlord said the lease was to go up from $4,500 per month to $8,000. A crowdfunding campaign was launched and in a little more than a month raised $60,000 to keep Adobe alive (http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/save-adobe-books). Then the landlord balked, refused to renew the lease, and said he was simply seeking "better" tenants.
The way its written here---Jack Spade taking over "a space where a used-book store could no longer make rent"---makes it sound like another out-dated business that couldn't keep up with the times. But it's not. The displacement of Adobe Books, even after agreeing to a near-doubling of its rent, is what has gotten people here up in arms, because it's exactly the kind of activity that formula retail laws are meant to protect against.
Read the ordinance, particularly the "findings" section, because it describes, almost to the letter, what happened to Adobe: http://goo.gl/F35F5g
We want Jack Spade to be subjected to the same public approval process as any other big business, because even if its calls itself "independent," it clearly benefits from the shared resources of its sister company, which itself benefits from the shared resources of its parent company. Community members should be heard before Jack Spade, or any other big corporation, is allowed to move into a neighborhood.