Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
American Apparel has already managed to open a store on Haight Street, despite a memorandum/ban there for chain or formula stores!! Very sneaky!!
My name is Werner Werwie. I immigrated to San Francisco from Germany in 1984 and fulfilled the American Dream. I leaned the language and submerged myself into the subculture of San Francisco by opening my first store “Clothes Contact“. We were the first used clothing store on Valencia Street.We opened our first store in 1986 on 473 Valencia at 16th Street. Clothes Contact was a true early pioneer on Valencia street. Our neighbors were the Picaro Cafe and Rainbow Grocery and then “nothing” – commercial desert. . . The 5000 square foot store was used as a storage room for “Golden Bear”, before we moved in. Three years later we incorporated as “Retro City Fashions, Inc.” We will be celebrating our 20th anniversary this year in June!
We now have 6 stores with 40 employees in the Mission, Haight and Telegraph/Berkely, 6 VERY different stores -ranging from Thrift Store to High End Vintage Boutique, (“Held Over” and “La Rosa Vintage” on Haight Street, check them out next time your on Haight!))
We have always paid more than minimum wages and offer a company HMO health plan to full timers. We have been recycling clothing and fabric (being green !!) for 23 years, providing cool fashions and fabrics to hundred of thousands of happy customers. Most of our inventory is “vintage”, 20 years old or older. Most of our business is local but we do have fans coming from all over the world. Manager and staff of eight all live in the Mission We hire and promote locally!
We sell A LOT (!!!) of clothing, not just for Halloween or the Burning Man event but every single day – and are not afraid of competion. In fact, the American Apperal store would most likely help our revenues – but we are concerned about Valencia Street being turned into ANOTHER boring strip mall.
It took Valencia Street over 20 years to develop into a wonderful destrict and I’m saddened to see it going downhill with formula / chain stores!! Please vote against an American Apparel store on Valencia.
Thank you for your consideration, Werner Werwie, Retro City Fashions, Inc. President