SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Mayor London Breed is holding a news conference Tuesday and touting the city’s “Roadmap to Downtown San Francisco’s Future.” The roadmap is the city’s plan to transform downtown from feeling like a ghost town to a “stronger, resilient, economic and global destination.”

The city suffered blows to its public image when several downtown department stores closed, and the recent airing of a CNN special asking, “What Happened to San Francisco?”

San Francisco’s image problem was also called out by high-profile figures. Last week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said downtown looks like a “derelict zombie apocalypse,” while comedian Dave Chappelle declared that the city needs a “Batman” to restore law and order.

San Francisco ranks dead-last in a nationwide study examining why some cities’ downtowns are bouncing back, and others are dying. “The Death of Downtown” study’s researchers said a tech-heavy economy and difficult commutes are partially to blame.

Mayor Breed launched a downtown roadmap that includes two PR campaigns dubbed, “Always San Francisco,” and “Make Your Future San Francisco.”

“I am proud of the aggressive first steps we’ve taken to support downtown, but we have a lot more work to do,” Breed said. “It’s in our DNA as San Franciscans to think bigger always and dream of the possibilities of what our city can be, and that’s what the roadmap is all about.”

Breed applauded her team for achieving nine milestone strategies within the last three months. According to the Mayor’s Office, those strategies are:

Strategy 1: “Ensure Downtown is clean, safe, and inviting with strategic investments that increase public safety and improve street conditions.”

  • Legislation was passed providing $25 million for police overtime pay, and a new police contract to hire more police officers.
  • Contracts for Mid-Market Safety Ambassadors and Downtown Welcome Ambassadors were extended.   
  • The city announced its “Home by the Bay Plan” to cut its unsheltered homelessness population in half.

Strategy 2: “Tell our story through proactive marketing to emphasize our strengths and reclaim our brand.”

  • The city partnered with SF Travel to launch a national “Always San Francisco” campaign to remind visitors of San Francisco’s “unique allure.”
  • The city also launched a “Make Your Future San Francisco” campaign to invite entrepreneurs and innovators downtown.

Strategy 3: “Attract and retain a diverse range of industries and employers by identifying and recruiting strategic sectors.”

Strategy 4: “Facilitate new uses and flexibility in buildings by maximizing the ability to update and adapt office buildings to meet the needs of new interested tenants.”

  • Introduced downtown zoning legislation to allow new uses and activities, support new businesses in Union Square, and create an Adaptive Reuse Program for the conversion of underutilized office buildings to housing.

Strategy 5: “Make it easier to start and grow a business.”   

  • Launched the Vacant to Vibrant program to match aspiring entrepreneurs and artists with vacant ground floor space downtown, star-up grants, and permitting assistance.      

Strategy 6: “Grow and prepare our workforce by preparing San Franciscans for growing industry sectors, as well as new ways to unlock housing production.”

Strategy 7: “Transform downtown into a leading arts, culture, and nightlife destination by creating an entertainment zone and seeding new businesses, events, activities, and experiences.”

  • Supported activations and events including the Yerba Buena Art & Makers Market, Union Square in Bloom, Bhangra & Beats Night Market in the Financial District and the Our Place in the Park AAPI film festival in SOMA.  

Strategy 8: “Enhance public spaces to showcase downtown by investing in enhancing and expanding plazas, alleyways, and other public space to improve people’s experience of downtown.”

  • Funded the Powell Street Promenade to refresh a key gateway to Union Square and help fill retail vacancies.   
  • Completed the transition of the emergency Shared Spaces program to a permanent tool for street activation.    

Strategy 9: “Invest in transportation connections to maintain access to downtown by every mode of transportation available.”

  • Launched the 1X California Express pilot connecting the Outer Richmond to the Financial District.