Neighborhood grocery store inches closer 

Residents of the Bayshore community, long frustrated by the lack of a grocery store, could get their wish with a commercial development being proposed for what is now part of a Cow Palace parking lot.

The Planning Commission will consider a proposal Tuesday to lease a 13-acre parcel from Cow Palace at the intersection of Geneva Avenue and Carter Street. The city wants to bring a commercial center with a supermarket and neighborhood services like a bank, post office and cleaners to the area, something that all involved agree has been a long time coming.

In October, residents held a rally to express their desire for a grocery store in the neighborhood — something the community hasn’t had since the El Rancho Market on Geneva closed down in the 1990s.

Lovell James, a retired accountant and 39-year resident of the community in the shadow of San Bruno Mountain’s northeast ridge, said that when he first moved to the area in 1968 there were plenty of grocery stores but they all left for reasons he didn’t know.

"We have no shopping area here — no grocery store. We need everything," said James, a member of the Bayshore Residents Association.

The 13-acre site would be linked with another 13-acre property the city’s redevelopment agency owns at the corner of Martin and Carter streets. In between the two parcels is a third, the former site of the Bayshore Drive-In theater, owned by the Syufy family.

Currently the 55-year lease, which does not have a finalized price yet, is before the General Services Agency in Sacramento for approval because Cow Palace is an agency of the state’s Food and Agriculture Division of Fairs and Expositions.

Daly City’s director of Economic and Community Development, Terry Sedik, said they were looking at this spring for approval or denial of the proposed lease, calling it the "first step in what we think is a push to the finish line" to build there.

"Under the circumstances, this is as good as we thought we probably could get," Sedik said. Working with supermarket interests throughout the Bay Area, the city was told that access to Geneva Avenue was critical to bringing a store to the neighborhood, he said.

Cow Palace plans on compensating for the lost parking, but the potential lease was not indicative of the event center losing business, said Dorene Will, an executive assistant with the arena.

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