Mayor Lee Announces Program to Support San Francisco Small Businesses

Neighborhood Marketplace Initiative Launches Storefront Beautification Program in Excelsior District

10/14/11—Mayor Edwin M. Lee today announced a new storefront beautification program that will provide 20 small businesses in the Excelsior District with storefront “facelifts” to beautify the commercial corridor and attract more visitors and shoppers. The program also includes a mobile parklet.

“Small businesses in San Francisco are the backbone of our economy and we need to support them in these tough economic times,” said Mayor Lee. “These improvements will beautify a substantial number of storefronts along Mission Street and improve the entire neighborhood experience. This is a great example of how the City can partner with the private sector to target resources, boost business and help support the economic recovery in the Excelsior and in other neighborhood commercial corridors in our City.”

In the new program, businesses will receive paint, replacement of signs and awnings, graffiti removal and protection, bird protection equipment, and branding. The parklet will be created in front of Mama Art Café through a partnership with Out of Site, a youth-focused community organization that has partnered with the Excelsior Action Group on many beautification projects.

The beautification initiative, funded through Office of Economic and Workforce Development (OEWD)’s SF  Shines façade improvement program, builds on a number of recent physical improvements the OEWD has helped to facilitate in the neighborhood with the Excelsior Action Group, including sidewalk planting projects at Mission and Geneva and Mission and Persia, the newly painted tower above the Goodwill at Mission and Ocean, the mural on the 280 overpass, and a unique program that created murals on the roll-down gates of 10 businesses. The Goodwill tower project, in particular, is the culmination of years of community advocacy focused on ending the graffiti problem plaguing this icon of the neighborhood.

“We at the Excelsior Action Group look forward to working hand in hand with the merchants to upgrade their storefronts, ultimately attracting new customers to these establishments and improving the attractiveness of the corridor as a whole,” said Excelsior Action Group Corridor Manager Nicole Agbayani.

Mission Street in the Excelsior is the flagship site of the Neighborhood Marketplace Initiative (NMI), a unique public-private partnership of OEWD and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) that helps local stakeholders to revitalize struggling commercial corridors in San Francisco.  In the Excelsior, NMI has helped direct and coordinate a range of City and private resources toward projects including art walks, mural projects, business recruitment, and a signature street fair which had its 9th anniversary last weekend. 

The new beautification program and the Goodwill tower beautification project are funded through the SF Shines Façade Improvement Program. Other City programs that have been targeted to this neighborhood through NMI include funds from Grants for the Arts and the Community Challenge Grant.

For more information on the storefront beautification program and other services for businesses in the Excelsior district, businesses may contact the Excelsior Action Group at