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    What Is the Castro CBD and Why Does it Have to Renew?

    By Andrea Aiello–

     We’re the folks who clean the streets! The folks you see pushing carts, sweeping the sidewalk, and steam cleaning … these services are paid for by the Castro/Upper Market Community Benefit District (Castro CBD). The Castro CBD is funded by the property owners in the footprint through an assessment fee placed on each parcel and through grants, donations, and sponsorships. The Castro CBD is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

    The Castro/Upper Market Community Benefit District (Castro CBD) is dedicated to making improvements in the district.

    Castro Clean Team washing the sidewalk on Castro Street

    What does the Castro CBD do?

    Cleaning

    In FY 2018–19 the Castro CBD removed:

    • 128,470 pounds of trash;
    • 2,260 dirty needles;
    • 919,166 graffiti, stickers, and illegal postings;
    • 3,085 incidences of human feces.

    We also:

    • Steam clean each block face in the district once a month;
    • Respond to calls for service through our cleaning dispatch number 415-471-7536 (in the CBD’s footprint only).

    Public Safety

    We collaborate with the other businesses and residents to support one SF Patrol Special Officer on patrol in the evenings seven days/week.

    Castro Cares, Our Homeless Outreach program, funds a street outreach worker and also additional Patrol Special Police patrols. Castro Cares provides both Homeless Outreach and added Enforcement through the Patrol Special Police.

    Economic Vitality

    Live! In The Castro: Kippy Marks, Alpha Rhythm Kings, and the Klipptones are some of the more popular bands that we host at Jane Warner Plaza every Saturday and Sunday starting at 1 pm between May–October. Go to our website and look for upcoming events ( http://castrocbd.org/events/ ).

    Commercial Vacancy Reduction: A new grant for a Commercial Corridor Manager has been submitted. The Commercial Corridor Manager will work on both attracting new businesses to the Castro and helping existing businesses to stay in the Castro.

    A member of the CBD’s Castro Ambassadors team explains a map of the Castro to visitors.

    The Castro CBD does great work, so why is renewal necessary?

    The law requires renewal. The Castro CBD was established with a 15-year term in 2005. Renewal requires approval from those who pay the assessment fee, approval of the property owners in the footprint. There are two phases to approval: the petition phase and the ballot phase. Petitions will be mailed to property owners in mid-November. We are urging all property owners to vote yes on the petition and to mail it back to the Castro CBD by December 15, 2019.

    What can you do to help?

    Thank your local merchants and property owners in the footprint for supporting the Castro CBD all of these years. Tell your favorite merchant that you support the Castro CBD’s renewal and you hope that their landlord will vote yes. Contact me at 415-500-1181 or via email ( andrea@castrocbd.org ) if you are interested in helping or learning more!

    Andrea Aiello is the Executive Director of the Castro/Upper Market Community Business District.