"San Francisco downtown as we know it is not coming back," Breed said while delivering remarks at her annual state of the city speech.
San Francisco mayor London Breed compared the state of her city’s downtown area to the devastating aftermath of the nearly 8.0 earthquake of 1906 that killed an estimated 3,000 people and destroyed 500 city blocks.
When speaking about the conditions affecting the downtown area Breed said over the past year she’s heard from workers and business owners who have expressed that their number one concern is public safety. “These are the people who ride Bart and Muni every single day, who go to our bars and our restaurants and who we need to bring downtown back to life.”
"We must accept another tough fact San Francisco downtown, as we know it, is not coming back. And you know what? That's okay. Empty office buildings (due to various factors including crime, cost of living and remote work) have fueled dire predictions about economic doom and the death of downtown. But let's keep some perspective here, in 1907, downtown was mostly rubble and ash, that's considerably worse than today's shift in how people are working”.
Speaking on crime she pointed out the city is lacking at least 500 police officers, while praising the efforts of District Attorney Brooke Jenkins. Breed touted a $25 million budget supplemental to find overtime and to keep our officers walking the beats making drug arrests and dealing with crime.
City leaders are also pushing for innovative programs to get people into care and to treatment including working on overdose prevention programs, but also stated “we need to enforce the law”, the mayor said.
Breed said even though the city has not returned to its pre-pandemic economy that this is a once in a generation opportunity to recruit new business sectors and companies and to create a more diverse and resilient local economy.
The mayor posted bullet points to her roadmap to downtown San Francisco’s future on her Twitter account:
She followed up by tweeting “building a stronger and more resilient downtown and city, will not happen overnight and it will take work and partnership with all of our business leaders and workforce.
Mayor London Breed is the 45th Mayor of San Francisco and the first African American woman elected to the position. She took office after a special election in 2018.
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