Old Navy to close downtown S.F. store after decades


The clothing giant, which has been cost-cutting with layoffs and numerous store closures across its Old Navy, Banana Republic, Athleta and namesake brands, said the store at 801 Market St. will close on July 1.

The store opened in 1999. Gap said the lease is expiring and it is “already working to identify new locations in downtown San Francisco that will better serve the needs of the business and our customers.”

“Old Navy is always evaluating its real estate portfolio to ensure a healthy fleet of stores that can provide the best possible experience for our customers,” the company said. “Gap Inc. has deep roots in San Francisco and is committed to the city.”

Just a block away, a Banana Republic closed inside Westfield Mall in April, and a flagship Banana Republic is relocating in Union Square to a smaller space. Another three Gap stores and an Athleta store have closed in San Francisco during the pandemic.

Gap has seen faltering sales, down 6% in its most recent fiscal year compared to the prior year. Executives cited supply chain disruptions for high inventory in the second half of the year, particularly at Old Navy, leading to worse profit margins as more promotions were issued to boost sales. Customer demand has also weakened during a period of high inflation.

Downtown San Francisco has been the victim of weaker foot traffic due to remote work and lower tourism during the pandemic, along with safety concerns and customers switching to online shopping.

The stretch of Market Street near Union Square has been hard-hit by retail closures: Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack are exiting, along with Saks Off Fifth. A Walgreens next to Old Navy was the site of a fatal shooting, and relatives of the victim, Banko Brown, sued the company and its security firm.

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