Williams-Sonoma, a retailer specializing in kitchen and home furnishings, confirmed Friday that it will leave its downtown San Francisco location next year, becoming the latest big retailer to leave the Union Square area.
The San Francisco Standard reported (original links):
The Williams-Sonoma Union Square store will close in 2024, the retailer confirmed Friday afternoon.
Williams-Sonoma is one of many stores that have left or plan to leave Union Square, with several of them blaming street conditions and reduced foot traffic.
News of the retailer’s closure comes after Nordstrom announced it would close both of its Downtown San Francisco locations. Whole Foods announced the closure of its flagship store at Market and Eighth streets in early April—just one year after it opened—citing deteriorating conditions locally.
The store is reportedly to be replaced by another retailer, Chanel. However, the future of retail in the Union Square area is in doubt — not only because the city has seen an exodus of residents and businesses since the pandemic, but also because it has suffered a rise in crime, including “mass looting” events in Union Square.
As Breitbart News reported, Coco Republic, a major Australian furniture retailer, is closing its flagship Union Square store less than a year after opening. The New York Sun reports that some are questioning whether the city is in a “doom loop,” in which business departures because of poor economic conditions cause those conditions to worsen, prompting more business departures. Last year, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that the downtown area was near “collapse,” adding that the situation there was “worse than it looks.”
Williams-Sonoma earnings, reported Tuesday, were down significantly, but profits beat market expectations.