Summary of RHN’s neighborhood survey on the Whole Foods 365 proposal
Nearly three-quarters of survey respondents were in favor of the Whole Foods 365 proposal and 72% of RHN members said it should support the project.
On February 5 Russian Hill Neighbors conducted an online survey to gauge support for a proposal for a Whole Foods 365 grocery store to move into the old Lombardi’s space at 1600 Jackson Street. A link to the survey was sent to RHN’s list of 678 email addresses, as well as Facebook and Twitter lists and the Nextdoor local website.
A total of 275 responses were received within the next four days.
- 89% said they lived within the boundaries of Russian Hill
- 64% said they were a member of Russian Hill Neighbors
The survey items and responses follow, along with a few of the many comments. Also the full survey can be viewed at the bottom of this article.
Question: Do you feel the existing grocery options for Russian Hill Residents are adequate for your needs?
- No: 71%, Yes: 21%, Not sure: 8%
While some praised the existing local markets in their comments, many felt they offered a limited selection and were too expensive:
“We have a number of small locally owned grocers and specialty food stores here that are wonderful. Leave us alone!”
“There is no place in walking distance to buy good quality, affordable groceries.”
“Could use more choices and probably would make local merchants up their game.”
Question: Would you personally be in favor of a Whole Foods 365 grocery store at 1600 Jackson Street?
- Yes: 74%, No: 16%, Not sure: 10%
Typical opposing comment:
“I walk to Whole Foods on California and Franklin, so we don’t need another one. The ‘365’ concept is mediocre.”
Typical comments in favor:
“That would be great. WF Franklin is too far for me.”
“I would love more grocery options closer to where I live.”
“This proposal would meet a real demand for a general grocery store of good quality within walking distance of many residents.”
Question: If the Whole Foods 365 store is approved, which, if any, concerns would you have?
- Increased traffic and congestion: No: 51%, Yes: 40%, Not sure: 9%
- Noise and congestion from deliveries: No: 65%, Yes: 23%, Not sure: 12%
- Negative impact on other local merchants: No: 52%, Yes: 32%, Not sure: 16%
A few of the comments:
“It would be critical to think though how delivery trucks would park.”
“Two big box stores from the same company w/in 5.5 walkable, public transit served blocks of each other is not good for the diversity and livability of the City.”
“There is a place for Cheese Plus or Real Foods. I wouldn’t like to see them driven out.”
“The Whole Foods on 24th Street has brought many more people to that shopping street and helps everyone.”
“I think everyone would just need to be a bit more competitive in selection of goods and presentation.”
Noting that these options were hypothetical at present, the survey presented some other possible uses of the site and asked if the respondent approved or disapproved.
- Housing only? No: 77%, Yes: 10%, Not sure: 13%
- Housing above a Whole Foods 365 store at the street level? Yes: 45%, No: 32%, Not sure: 23%
- Housing above other retail at street level? Yes: 38%, No: 37%, Not sure: 25%
- Other retail: No: 45%, Not sure: 38%, Yes: 18%
- Other non-retail: No: 49%, Not sure: 41%, Yes: 10%
“Great to see mixed use—very important, residential above commercial is perfect for the neighborhood and location.”
“Housing above is OK, but should not be required of the store developers. It will slow down the project and add heaps of expense. Take it off the table.”
“This section of Polk cannot adequately accommodate housing due to lack of infrastructure including parking.”
“I like the current building so don’t think there needs to be a construction site on the land for years.”
Question: Regarding the Whole Foods 365 proposal, would you like Russian Hill Neighbors to:
- Take a position in support of the project: 69%
- Not take a position: 17%
- Take a position against the project: 14%
The 159 respondents who said they were RHN members:
- Take a position in support of the project: 72%
- Not take a position: 16%
- Take a position against the project: 13%
Several commenters said that RHN should take a position based on the outcome of the survey or suggested conditions that should be attached.
Thank you to all those who took part in the survey. RHN and DZLU will be working with neighborhood groups, city government, and Whole Foods to ensure we have something that Russian Hill supports and wants. If you have further questions please email DZLU.
Click WF365 Survey to see the full survey.
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