San Francisco News
Mayor promises help for Ocean Ave. merchants
SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Help is on the way for businesses that were damaged by a big fire in San Francisco one week ago. Mayor Ed Lee is promising to streamline the process that will help property owners rebuild and get back to business.
The mayor says this is somewhat unprecedented -- just one week after fire swept through a row of small businesses on Ocean Avenue in the Ingleside neighborhood, the city is making an all-out push to help the owners rebound.
"It's already hard enough to recover, so we need to make it easier for them; whether it's a building permit, a planning process, working with public works, public health," Lee said.
One building housing three businesses has to be demolished. The city is trying to ease that pain.
"If they want to rebuild it essentially the same shape and size that it is today, that can happen quickly; there's no notification process, no hearing process," San Francisco Planning Director John Rahaim said.
The commercial corridor has been improving in recent years. Merchants have formed a community benefit district, a new bank is coming in and they have the first full-service grocery store in years.
"It's changing for the better but I feel sad for my neighbors and friends that they got hurt," Hossam Kaddoura, from Java On Ocean Avenue, said. His business is down the block from those that burned.
The mayor says the rapid response to that disaster exemplifies what he calls his "invest in neighborhoods" strategy that has gotten an economic boost from the city's recently approved budget.
Merchants are just anxious to see some tangible results. Carmen Carrizales is still in shock after her shop, Lili Knit, a mainstay on the block for more than 40 years, was destroyed.
"I just feel it's part of my life and you see there's nothing left," she said. "I hope everything [Lee] says is true."
The fire chief announced Tuesday that the cause of the fire was work being done on the roof of one of the buildings.
The fire did at least $3 million in damage and spread to 10 businesses.
ingleside, fire, ed lee, san francisco news, carolyn tyler
- SJ store owner gets $1M for selling winning ticket 5 min ago
- Family to hold prayer vigil for girl on life support
- Two cars gifted in annual East Bay holiday tradition 21 min ago
- Behind-the-scenes: Saying farewell to 'The Stick'
- Bay Bridge bolt fix running a month behind schedule
- SF supervisor proposes ban on botled water 42 min ago
- Georgia woman has 1 of 2 winning lottery tickets
- Hero guide dog assured good home after NY rescue
- Patriarch off 'Duck Dynasty' after gay comments 41 min ago
- Woman distracted by FB on phone falls off pier
- abcnews: Justin Bieber says 'I'm Retiring' from music 22 min ago
- Bay Area New Year's Eve fireworks and events 1 min ago
- roundup: Stolen ATM recovered; SF shooting
- weather: Bay Area weather forecast for Thursday
- SJ store owner gets $1M for selling winning...
5 min ago
- SF supervisor proposes ban on botled water
42 min ago
Most Viewed StoriesMost Viewed Photos