Photo by Uptown Almanac

Rumors about what business will open at 780 Valencia St. have been floating around ever since the Summit mysteriously left in January.

Last month, Ashwin Navin of I/O Ventures told us that longtime resident Jose Ramos will take over the space under the name 780 Cafe. Many saw the cafe as a placeholder for something bigger — an enterprise that can pay the increasingly expensive rates on Valencia Street.

Uptown Almanac is reporting that the Valencia Corridor Merchants Association will hold an “emergency meeting” March 5 to discuss the possibility of La Boulange “formula retail” moving into the Summit space. We at Mission Loc@l have also heard from several sources that a formula retail restaurant could be in the works; La Boulange was one of the names mentioned.

The Merchants Association is concerned that a formula retail shop with deep pockets could open the floodgates and put their businesses at risk, members told Mission Loc@l.

Yesterday we heard back from Navin, who dismissed the rumors.

“As long as we’re in the building,” Navin said, “we’ll always try to give the start-up entrepreneur a chance, and right now we’re happy to see Jose Ramos take the torch. Let’s show him the love and support he has offered the whole community in the Mission over the last 10-plus years.

“Jose Ramos and his family subleased the space from the Summit and will operate under the exact same rental figures, which are below what other businesses pay their landlords on Valencia Street. If Jose can keep his payroll and operating costs under control, we are confident he can turn a profit.”

As for why the Summit left?

“The Summit is not operating today for reasons that Summit managers could probably speak to,” Navin said. “We are grateful for their contribution to the community, and we are sad to see them go (both as a landlord and an investor!).”

Desi Danganan, the owner of the Summit, has not responded to a request for an interview.

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Rigoberto Hernandez is a journalism student at San Francisco State University. He has interned at The Oregonian and The Orange County Register, but prefers to report on the Mission District. In his spare time he can be found riding his bike around the city, going to Giants games and admiring the Stable building.

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