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Formula retail

San Francisco has something known as the Commission Guide for Formula Retail. Formula retail = chain store. Formula retail uses are regulated by the San Francisco Planning Code. 

The intent behind the guide is really twofold: It’s to help assess the appropriateness of chain store uses in specific locations and it’s to help counter their homogenizing force on neighborhoods.

This, of course, is a perennial tension for city builders. The challenge is that formula retailers usually have the ability to pay higher rents compared to smaller independent businesses. And so that’s who landlords will often lease to.

If you’re the kind of person who enjoys reading esoteric planning documents, then consider incorporating the above SF commission guide into your bedtime reading repertoire.

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