More than a dozen nonprofits have been forced out of San Francisco’s Mid-Market neighborhood due to rent hikes, the Chronicle reports, and the ones that remain are struggling.
As Twitter, Zendesk, Square, Uber, Dolby, and other tech companies have moved into Mid-Market since 2011, rents doubled from $25 to $50 per square foot. Most non-profits have migrated to Oakland—where rents are about half—including the Transgender Law Center, Great Schools, the Kapor Center for Social Impact, New Leaders, Muslim Advocates, Catholic Youth Association, Compass Point, the Sound Room, and Amazon Watch.
The nonprofits fighting to stay are making sacrifices to do so: Home Supportive Services Consortium at 1035 Market Street is operating from a basement; The Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation is moving into trailers at the corner of Taylor and Eddy Streets because it could not find temporary housing while its new space is being renovated; and Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired sold its former home at 214 Van Ness Avenue and took out loans to buy a 40,000-square-foot, prime spot at 1155 Market Street.
But perhaps the biggest battle awaits the nearby Hyde Street Community Services at 134 Golden Gate Avenue, which has been forced to move after its rent was doubled. It manages the Tenderloin Outpatient Clinic and, for 40 years, has served between 50 and 60 clients a day for issues ranging from trauma to schizophrenia. When the nonprofit found an affordable new space at 815 Hyde St., it was met with opposition by a tenant and business organization called Save Our Streets, which told the Examiner that the facility would “setback” its efforts to improve the area. The Health Commission is set to vote on the new location on July 15.
The Board of Supervisors recently voted to create a $2.5 million rent stabilization fund to help Mid-Market organizations and set aside $2 million for arts nonprofits. Through a $5 million donation by the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, Luggage Store Gallery and CounterPULSE arts space have moved into new locations at 1007 Market Street and 80 Turk Street, respectively.
Meanwhile, over in the Castro, the HIV and LGBT nonprofit Under One Roof will close on July 31 due to rising rent at 541 Castro Street and its now-closed other locations. In its 21 years, the organization raised more than $4 million for HIV/AIDS charities at its retail shops.
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