Grocery store possibilities are corralled

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The neighborhood that has been devoid of a grocery store for years now has multiple proposals for a facility to be built.

Daly City officials have long expressed interest in the Cow Palace land, which they say could be redeveloped for a grocery store, a commercial center, housing or even schools.

State Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco-San Mateo, introduced Senate Bill 1527 in early February, which would have allowed the state to sell the entire state-owned Cow Palace property to Daly City. The 67-year-old facility would have been razed to make room for the redevelopment.

At that time, Patricia Martel, the city manager of Daly City, said the cost for the city would be between $80 million and $100 million. That price was “fair market value,” according to the bill.

The bill was later amended so just a 13-acre overflow parking lot would be sold instead of the entire site. It was also changed to sell the land to the highest bidder, instead of just to Daly City.

On Friday, the legislation to sell the parking lot was approved by the state Senate, said Adam Keigwin, a spokesman for Yee. The bill will now go to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has until Sept. 30 to sign it.

“Through SB 1527, the Bayshore neighborhood can finally be revitalized and receive a grocery store, bank, post office and elementary school,” Yee said Friday in a prepared statement.

Yee’s bill is not the only proposal right now for redeveloping the parking lot at the Cow Palace. The facility’s board of directors announced this week that they decided to become involved in exclusive negotiations and authorize a long-term lease preference with development firm Cypress Equities Northwest.

A press release issued by the board said the proposal would bring a grocery store to the area while providing funds that would allow the Cow Palace to remain in operation.

“It’s a win-win situation,” board President Henry Kuechler said in a written statement. “The community gets the retail development, including a grocery store complex it had desired, and the Cow Palace retains a valuable source of income to insure to continue financial viability.”

Keigwin said that if the bill is approved, it will trump the decision by the Cow Palace board of directors.

Both options, he said, would provide a much-needed grocery store for the Bayshore neighborhood, which has been neglected for too long.

mbillings@sfexaminer.com

Wire reports contributed to this report.

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