Downtown San Francisco stores board ahead of election


Downtown San Francisco storefronts board ahead of polling day in anticipation of looting and riots.

Homeowners are bracing for potential unrest just months after people flooded the streets to protest the murder of George Floyd. Most marched peacefully, but some opportunistic vandals engaged in violent activity and looting in Union Square.

The hope is that a similar anarchy doesn’t kick in after the election, but in case the buildings along Market Street, from the Salesforce Tower to downtown San Francisco, are covered in huge pieces of plywood. By Friday afternoon, Macy’s in Union Square was already fully covered and a team was working on Neiman Marcus.

Carlos Garcia, the manager of Men’s Wearhouse on Market Street, said the store decided to cover the windows with boards when other people in the neighborhood started doing it, but he hopes the extra protection isn’t necessary. “I have a feeling that whatever the election results, Californians are smart enough to know that the riot is counterintuitive,” Garcia said. “I really hope there won’t be unrest in San Francisco. ”

The Union Square business improvement district told the San Francisco Chronicle that it expects 75% of businesses to get on board.


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