Merchants join forces to help revitalize Daly City street

A bullet hole in the wall of Gary Rudolph’s 56-year-old store on Mission Street serves as a reminder to him of just how vital it is to improve the long-dilapidated commercial corridor.

“The more support we have from the businesses, the more business we can drive to the neighborhood,” said Rudolph, owner of Rudolph’s Interiors and the president of the newly formed Merchants Along Mission Street, an association of 48 businesses.

The association, which is meeting next week, is trying to take charge of the neighborhood while waiting for the city to redevelop the area.

Next year, Daly City is planning to build a new wind-shielded bus terminal at the major intersection of Mission Street and John Daly Boulevard. This year, a much-anticipated 95-condo project of 18,000 square feet of retail space as well as 350 parking spaces — a rare commodity on Mission Street — will be completed.

Jose Guillermo Pinzon, who owns Lisa’s Mexican Restaurant across the street from the rising condominium building, said having new residents on Mission Street will help the area thrive.

“Three years ago, nobody cared about this area and people went outside of Daly City to shop and go to restaurants, but now the city is trying to keep the business here,” said Pinzon, who is looking to open a second restaurant, possibly also on Mission Street.

One of the biggest problems in the commercial corridor is the proliferation of graffiti,

Capt. Corey Roay of the Daly City Police Department said. He said despite a rise in graffiti, Mission’s merchants recently started helping the police by being more diligent about cleaning up the graffiti.

“The merchants’ association has helped to educate their peers about compliance,” Roay said.

By banding together, said Rudolph, who encourages his neighbors to keep the neighborhood clean, merchants can form a safety net as well as have a more vocal presence when it comes to city’s decisions on the area.

He hopes the group can find a grant to plant more trees along the streets — anything to attract more customers and new businesses.

“We need to find some way to let people know that it’s a good place to be,” said Marian Mann. “This is about the resurgence of Mission Street.”

svasilyuk@examiner.com

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