SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — The Whole Foods Market location in downtown San Francisco is set to close at the end of business Monday, just a year or so after opening in March of 2022, KRON4 has confirmed. Employees at the store will be transferred to other locations nearby.
“To ensure the safety of our Team Members, we have made the difficult decision to close the Trinity store for the time being,” said a Whole Foods Market spokesperson. “All team members will be transferred to one of our nearby locations.”
The grocery store, one of the largest in San Francisco, opened on March 10, 2022. At the time, the grocery store chain, which is owned by Amazon, called the Mid-Market location San Francisco’s “flagship store.”
“The store’s design nods to classic San Francisco with inspiration from the former Crystal Palace Market, the modern, industrial feel of the Tenderloin district and the iconic colors of the Golden Gate Bridge,” read part of a news release announcing the store’s opening.
The 64,737-square-foot location was one of the largest grocery stores in San Francisco and boasted more than 3,700 local products, according to the retailer.
A spokesperson told KRON4 the store would be closed for the time being. There is no current word or timeframe on whether the store will reopen at any point.
“I’m incredibly disappointed but unsurprised by the temporary closure of Mid-Market Whole Foods,” said SF Supervisor Matt Dorsey on Twitter. “Our neighborhood waited a long time for this supermarket, but we’re also well aware of the problems they’ve experienced with drug-related retail theft, adjacent drug markets, and the many safety issues related to them.”
“It’s really off putting to be walking to work this morning and see that there is only one business that’s thriving on the corner of Market and 8th Street, and that’s street level drug dealers,” Dorsey added in a comment to KRON4.
The Mid-Market area of San Francisco has struggled in the wake of the pandemic. With many of the tech workers who once frequented the area during the daytime working from home, retail and restaurant locations in the area have particularly struggled.
A spokesperson for the store said the reason for the closure is to ensure the safety of team members. Dorsey said the city is short several hundred police officers to handle the open-air drug markets in the area.
He says federal help is needed from the US Attorney General and Drug Enforcement Administration to crack down on the sale of illegal drugs.
“This is an illegal business enterprise that SF PD’s narcotics enterprise value at about 100 million dollars and it is operating with impunity in too many neighborhoods in our city,” Dorsey said.
Whole Foods maintains the closing of the Market Street location is temporary. Dorsey hopes that means they’ll consider re-opening at some point in the future.