Activists try again to stop Jack Spade

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The fight to keep suspected formula retailer Jack Spade out of the Mission resumes this evening (Wed/9) when The Stop Jack Spade Coalition lays out it's case against the men’s clothing chain before the Board of Appeals in an attempt to force the business to go through a conditional use permit hearing. [UPDATE: Activists say they won a big victory last night, not just winning that vote but maybe convincing Jack Spade to withdraw its application completely. We're working on confirming things now and we'll have more details soon.]

The new push against Jack Spade comes less than two months after an original appeal found the retailer not to be in violation of the neighborhood's formula retail ban, with the opposition campaign getting written support of Sups. Eric Mar, John Avalos, and David Campos. They join a growing list of those opposed to the retailer, one that currently features former Board of Supervisors presidents Matt Gonzalez and Aaron Peskin and Assemblymember Tom Ammiano.

If the coalition is granted a rehearing, it will be the second time an appeal is heard on the matter. On Aug. 21, the Board of Appeals ruled against the retailer in a 3-2 majority decision, but the decision still lacked the four votes required to revoke the building permits.

Jack Spade — currently slated to rent the former Adobe Bookshop storefront at 3166 16th Street — was originally granted its business and building permits sans conditional use hearing, an act that was supposed to be unheard of for a prospective national retailer inside a neighborhood with a formula retail ban.

The 2004 formula retail ordinance requires a businesses to get a conditional use permit before moving into certain San Francisco neighborhoods if they meet the "formula retail" criteria. Part of that criteria states that a store can have no more than 11 "retail sales establishments located in the United States." Jack Spade, pre-Mission store, has just 10 unique stores, which allowed them to circumvent the hearing process.

But according to 5th & Pacific's public records, the holding company (formerly known as Liz Claiborne) that owns Jack Spade, the high-end men's clothing store is not an independent business but rather a sub-brand of Kate Spade; a women's clothing store with 94 locations in the United States alone.

The coalition opposing Jack Spade's now-imminent Mission migration is using this piece of information as Exhibit A in their fight against the retailer. The coalition is claiming that by not acknowledging the fact that Jack Spade itself was part of a far larger corporation, the retailer violated the formula retail ban by claiming "independent business" status.

As the move-in date for the Mission's unwanted addition grows near, the coalition has taken up the cause once again, mustering support from nearly every constituency available.

It will be bringing its revamped case to the Board of Appeals, this time with testimony seemingly focused on the misleading nature of Jack Spade's classification as an "independent business." That should prove to be an effective move for the coalition, because Jack Spade isn't an independent business, and they don't try to classify themselves as such outside of San Francisco.

In fact, according to 5th & Pacific's 10-K filings with the SEC, the "Kate Spade brand offers fashion accessories for women under the Kate Spade and Kate Spade Saturday trademarks, and for men under the Jack Spade trademark." The two brands even share the same CEO: Craig Leavitt. Declaring that the two companies are independent of each other based on product offering is like saying beef and milk are independent of  other because they come from different parts of the cow.

Now, armed with an updated defense, the Coalition is taking a second stab at the appellate process, one they feel good about. In a letter to the Board, executive director of the Valencia Corridor Merchant Association (VCMA) Luis Granados said, "If the findings section were fully taken into account [last time], we believe the Board will see that Jack Spade is formula retail, as set forth under the law."

Or as Gonzalez wrote in a letter to the Board of Appeals: “Issues of corporate ownership and/or corporate structure have been a matter of debate in previous hearings regarding Jack/Kate Spade’s permits.  While nowhere in the planning code does it require the consideration of corporate ownership/structure, neither does the ordinance forbid a consideration of corporate ownership/structure.  Indeed, in order to fulfill the clear intent of the law in a common sense manner, it will be necessary, in some cases, to consider corporate ownership/structure.

I urge you to grant the VCMA’s request for a rehearing of Jack/Kate Spade’s permits in order to prevent manifest injustice.”

And considering the momentum that the anti-Jack Spade movement is now gaining, the optimism isn't unreasonable.

Activist Andy Blue, who helped organize the protest, acknowledged the high bar needed to overrule the flawed ruling by the Planning Department, telling us, “We’re cautiously optimistic, but it’s a long shot.”

Comments

If it is not a good fit for the neighborhood, it won't do well and will close anyway.

The landlord is entitled to get the best rent that he can. Let them open and don't shop there if you don't like it. Why try and micro-manage everything? Live and let live.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:58 pm

The main problem with chains is they use corporate subsidies, economies of scale, and indefinitely absorbing single-store losses to unfairly compete against local small businesses, driving up rents and starting a cycle of gentrification that hurts diversity and local character. Only government regulation can level the playing field, as voters have decided to do in San Francisco and many other cities, to restore balance and competition to the market. Many conservatives and reactionaries who claim to believe in markets actually push a sort of law of the jungle that is the antithesis of a functional market, which is based on the premise of fair competition. 

http://www.sfbg.com/2012/07/10/malling-san-francisco

Posted by steven on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 4:20 pm

because of efficiencies and economies of scale.

Why is that a bad thing? Doesn't the consumer deserve that option?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 4:27 pm

dramatically lowering the local multiplier effect of spent dollars

because of this, local economies benefit more far from local business than chains, no matter how efficient are the latter

and then there is the obvious fact that chains destroy large numbers of local businesses thereby demolishing the character and economic diversity of the city

Posted by racer x on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 6:27 pm
Posted by racer x on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 6:29 pm

here, and so it all evens out in the end.

We cannot be a modern successful economy unless we operate at scale.

And the consumer wants cheap stuff - just look at how popular Costco, WalMart, Target etc. all are.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:31 am
No

Because very few product chains are headquartered in San Francisco.

And even if a lot of them were, large chain store corporations gather wealth at the top, to the 1%, and the income which that 1% makes, goes largely into speculation and financial mechanisms, instead of local market economies.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:42 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:56 am

many businesses in the field of tech, finance, biotech, real estate, investment management.

Of course, SF business-unfriendly attitude has driven out the really big HQ's, like BofA and Wells, but they retain a major presence. Schwab is still based here.

It's swings and roundabouts, but collectively we are all better off exporting goods to each other than living in the kind of medievil feudal economy that you seem obsessed with.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:00 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:23 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 4:03 pm

Yeah...I grew up in Manhattan, and couldn't help noticing the last times I visited all the Starbucks in my neighborhood (upper West side)--all over. It was disheartening because it lacks soul. There is no other way to say it. The same chain block after block...for coffee no less. What a relief to find a more personalized coffee/pastry place with its own wonderful twist somewhere in the neighborhood.

I hear in NYC—and I'm no expert on the politics of the place as I never lived there as an adult—anything goes. Propose it and it will be built. Correct me if I'm wrong...but San Francisco is different: it is more small scale, more of a down-to-earth feel for sure—that's why many New Yorkers chose to move here. So it is fitting that people here will stand for keeping the charm of certain neighborhoods—those with that special down-home feel to them of which the Mission is a prime example.

Let Jack Spade go to Union Square. It's OK to have a Jack Spade, but not at the expense of keeping the charm of the Mission. We want to keep the soul where it currently resides. That is worth taking a stand for, I feel.

I hope it all shakes out that SF gets to keep what makes it special. But it's gonna take people power to do that, and I think we have that in spades ;)

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 8:32 pm

NYC is full of independent coffee shops, stores and everything else. It just depends where in the city you go. Times Square is like you say, but then so is Fisherman's Wharf.

Seems to me you must have stayed in the tourist parts of NY rather than the real parts.

Micro-managing what businesses operate where is futile, because the market always ultimately decides what will flourish and what will fail. We don't need a bureaucrat to do that.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:35 am

You didn't read my post: I said in the upper West side, which is not a tourist part. I still visited my apt where we lived for 50 years every year until we sold it in 2010. So I could see the difference, as someone who grew up there and went there on a regular basis—that is, at least once a year.

There are also Duane Reeds everywhere—that chain drug store.
If NYC wants to do that, fine. I didn't like it. Maybe the place is just too busy/urban/large-scale/business-oriented and has lost its sense of intimacy....That is what I notice now when I go there: the consumer ethic of buy buy buy screams at you from every corner—down in the village as well. That, maybe, is New York.

But here I think we enjoy a slower pace. It is why I moved here—to have the urban, but to have it on a smaller scale. And that includes the creative, smaller, idiosyncratic stores that we love—precisely because they offer us mystery and beauty.

You say: "the market always ultimately decides what will flourish and what will fail". I say: BS. Who does the market serve? I applaud a place that takes its democracy seriously. What is a neighborhood?

A market w/out regulation doesn't work. Just like Wall Street didn't work w/out regulation. Regulation is not a dirty word. I think it's the human condition that we have a propensity to mess things up, unless there is some form of checks and balances. Disagree if you like. We created the market. We created capitalism. We can tweak it to make things better.

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:18 am

This person is not going to change his mind.

He is a knee-jerk, free-market-as-religion ideologue.

No matter what you say to him, his essentially religious (rather than rational) perspective will not change.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:34 am

doubly ironic to see you accusing someone else of that.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:54 am

I know, Eric. I was just posting elsewhere: oh, no. Here I go do-si-do-ing w/ ....well, yes, I get the picture. I think I will start getting the Chronicle, maybe at least until Election day, and write there. That's what I was feeling I ought to do last time I wrote here in the Guardian. But it's also my way of supporting the Guardian, so I don't mind doing it once in awhile. Hopefully, many people still read the Guardian, ie people who are still sussing out an issue.
Have a nice day!

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:58 am

his dumb barriers. The other commentators are generally educated, articulate and sincere, even when we disagree with them.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:22 am

The upper west side of Manhattan gets a lot of tourists - Lincoln Center, St. John the Divine, the Cloisters, Columbia and so on.

And NYC has Duane Reed and SF has WalGreens. What's the difference?

NY has a mix of chain and local, and so does SF. I have lived in both and see little difference.

The rest of your post is just the usual left-wing rant about wanting to regulation everything that moves and most things that don't. I trust people to be given a choice - you evidently do not and want to take away my option of shopping at a chain.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:54 am

Again: you didn't read my post. Eric is right when he says "knee jerk reaction": you can tell you "react" when you don't even have the presence of mind to read what I said.

I said: It's OK to have a Jack Spade store--just not necessarily in a small-scale neighborhood such as the Mission. Union Square would be a better option. So no, I do not "want to take away your option of shopping at a chain."

This is where it ends, Guest. I've got a busy day ahead of me.

So let me sum it up for you: No one is taking away your rights (and mine) to shop a chain. But in the same spirit, we don't want "the market forces" to take away, start chipping away at, a neighborhood. You have a nice day too.

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:13 am

both chain stores and local stores in both. The real comparison is between those cities and the suburbs where I would agree with you that the uniformity is tedious.

As long as SF has a mix of both, I do not care what is where. Geography tends to push chain stores either downtown or further out, but I am not in the business of telling stores where in the city they should go - that's a purely commercial decision and a matter between the landlord and tenant.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:32 am

There is more than one way to slice and dice.

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:51 am

Your idea seems to be a that a high-end clothing store should be put in the Marina (presumably) because there are more affluent whites there. While the Mission, with more poor hispnaic people, should not have the opportunity to buy such clothes? Because you think they should wear only cheap crappy clothes of the type easily available on Mission Street?

Can you see how offensive that type of race and class stereotype is? And why it should have no place in the determination of what stores go where?

If spade think they can sell $1,000 men's suits on 16th Street, who are you to say otherwise?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 11:27 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 1:15 pm

Guest, Guest, Guest.....
Good thing I just ate some soup.

"Your idea seems to be a that a high-end clothing store should be put in the Marina (presumably)". Never mentioned the Marina. I did mention Union Square, where there are a lot of "chain" outfits.

"While the Mission, with more poor hispnaic people, should not have the opportunity to buy such clothes?" First of all, that's hispanic, not hispnaic. A little spell check never hurts. Who said that hispanics can't buy such clothes? You do not seem to understand the issue, unless you think people who live in the Mission never venture out of their neighborhood. That's a little presumptuous of you, don't you think?

"Can you see how offensive that type of race and class stereotype is?" See my last observation in above paragraph.

It's about keeping the integrity of a neighborhood. So regulations are put in place. As I said earlier, we are not banning Jack Spade. We are preserving the character of a neighborhood.

You may not care about this. But many do.
Please show at least a little "caring" in at least reading carefully what people write, instead of misquoting. When you learn how to do that, then maybe you'll start to understand where these activists are coming from. Then maybe you'll learn empathy, and you won't feel so contrarian all the time.

Peace out.

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:41 pm

and can you please stop feeding the troll?

thanks in advance

peace ;)

Posted by racer x on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:58 pm

No more troll feeding.

Posted by Daniele E. on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 7:37 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:19 am

Sorry, but protesting a jack spade in the mission is a little rich when you have a ridiculously overpriced "pirate store" nearby where you sign your credit cards with a quill pen.
The story here is that its fine to be a "mom and pop" store selling extremely overpriced crap, but if you might somehow be connected to a chain you are the antichrist.
(take a walk through cole hardware and tell me why everything is covered with Ace hardware labelling)

The claim that jack spade is just a sub brand of kate spade is also pretty ridiculous.
They arent the same people, and kate spade does not sell any menswear - the product assortment contains no overlap whatsoever.

Poor choice by the jack spade people to choose the mission, Marina or upper fillmore would have been a much better choice.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:22 am

Every chain store started out as a mom and pop store at one time. The good ones grow; the bad ones remain local and quirky, but do not endure or prosper.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:33 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:36 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:44 am

Just contractually obligate Jack Spade to stock one shelf with organic teas, BDSM gear, and books about Marxist theory, and everyone walks away a winner.

Posted by Chromefields on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:37 am

disabled hispanic lesbian with purple hair and a tattoo.

Rainbow have some to spare, I heard . .

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:57 am

Wow, you got disabled people, hispanics and lesbians all in one comment. You must be really proud of yourself. The amazing power of being anonymous on the internet. Go ahead and say the things you really want to say and be the asshole that everyone knows you trully are! Bravo sir!

Posted by Julian on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:05 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:25 pm

I have noticed that when a chain store does open up in San Francisco it usually gets alot of businees by the locals. That leads me to believe that the anti-chain store crowd is a vocal minority. But the message they seem to be sending is that the city welcomes any businesses so long as they pledge themselves to decades of anemic growth, with no plans to expand anywhere at any time. That’s a prescription for economic stagnation, blight and joblessness that benefits no one.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:39 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:55 am

folks don't have a car and cannot just do what I do and scoot down to Serramonte once a week to save $$$. (Sales tax is cheaper there too).

SF still doesn't have a WalMart, even now only has two Targets, and one Costco.

Consumers need choice not having their choice limited by an ideologically corrupt nanny state.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 9:58 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole, and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier man on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 10:22 am

And I seriously doubt any neighborhood in this city, even in distressed places like the Bayview or Excelsior, is going to want one either. We're getting another Target, which makes three citywide and the single Costco is enough.

Posted by Lucretia Snapples on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 1:01 pm

What I am struggling with is why you would want to deprive others who might want a WalMart close by?

I'm not fat or female but I have no desire to ban Lane Bryant stores from SF just because they do not interest me.

What happened to the famed SF tolerance and appreciation of diversity?

PS: Where's the third Target? Former Metreon, former Mervyns and . . the third?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 1:07 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 1:20 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:13 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:15 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:51 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:11 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:53 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 6:11 pm
Posted by barrier on Oct. 10, 2013 @ 5:15 pm

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