Target, NOPA Neighbors to Commence NIMBY Fight Over Proposed Store

Ready, Aim, Nimbyfight
Target has scheduled its first NIMBY meeting for a proposed store at the old Mervyn's site at Masonic and Geary Streets, Bike NoPa reports. Target would seem a shoo-in for a site previously occupied by chain department stores such as Sears and Mervyn's. But this neighborhood north of the Panhandle and south of Masonic is legendary for not-in-my-back-yard battles.

Just four blocks away from the old Mervyn's site, neighbors managed to so delay and stymie development of a mixed-use apartment and grocery-store complex at Fulton Street and Masonic that developer Oz Ericson later swore he'd made a critical mistake in choosing to take on the feisty NOPA neighbors a decade ago.

Back then, neighbors fought for less housing, and more automobile parking.

The neighborhood has grown more sophisticated since then, however. Bike NoPa, for one, emphasizes benefits the proposed retail store could bring, while warning that motorist-focused development could turn the neighborhood into a lousier traffic sewer than it already is.

The website has been going after the issue of development on Masonic as if it were something good to eat, and Monday laid out the issues before neighbors wishing to attend Target's outreach meeting Wednesday evening.

For one thing, neighbors fretting about the proposed Target will be taking a different tack than those in the 1997-2000 fight over the site of the old Falletti's grocery store four blocks south. Back then, neighbors wanted to maximize space for cars.

For a Target at the old Mervyn's site, "adequate parking is the only non-issue," Bike NoPa reports. "With a half-dozen vastly-under-utilized parking lots, the spaces are already there."

Per Bike NoPa:

Target would also attract thousands of motorists just as the city undertakes a community-based rethinking of Masonic Avenue and how the corridor now primarily serves motorists and transit riders with little account for people walking or biking. A Target outlet would dilute San Francisco's Transit First policy (which applies to Muni as well as pedestrians and bicyclists) and would undermine the city's resolve to keep national chain stores out of the neighborhoods. Non-union jobs at Target adds one more negative for many in the city.

Visit that site for every other possible problem with Target under the sun. Really, every one.

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