Clean up crew near Folsom and 17th Streets. Photo by Andrea Valencia

The businesses at the shallow end of the Mission between 14th and 18th Streets and Harrison and Folsom continued to be most affected by the storm that hit late last night with one crew getting 68 calls in a two block area.

The rain that rushed into some of the buildings rose as high as five feet, said Jason Griminger, a supervisor for the clean-up crew. A residential building on Folsom between 17th and 18th Streets reported waist deep water in some areas, and after hours of work flood response crews were still wading through knee-deep water in one garage.

The video below shows footage from the scene at 18th and Folsom earlier today:

Video from Mission Local on Vimeo, courtesy of Joe Espinoza of El Tepa.

Gallardo’s Mexican Restaurant managed to avoid a repeat of the flooding in early December by putting out more sandbags, and remained open. Hans Art auto shop also learned from flooding incidents earlier this month and put out sandbags and pulled cars in from their parking lot, which did see two feet of flooding.

Like other buildings along Treat Avenue including ActivSpace, Hans Art discovered that the extra sandbags and plastic tarps worked. Others, including The Stable Cafe and the Cheese School on Folsom Street, could not stop the flooding and closed.

“The city drains aren’t working, they’re too small,” said Eddie Vega, a welder working at the Cheese School, which is next door to the Stable Cafe.

The manager of the Stable Cafe had tried metal barriers as well, but Griminger said those failed while sandbags put in place at many other buildings overnight had kept most of the water out.

Stable, like all of the buildings in the area that were built before 1930, is too low and the city’s drains inevitably fail to save it from flooding.

The floorboards in the office of Hilde Brand were being replaced after water damage, and many offices in ActivSpace are awaiting sheetrock replacement for their walls from previous flooding.

At Rite Spot on 17th and Folsom, Jose Hu was mopping the floor, noting that staff had just repainted the floor a few days ago after earlier flooding had destroyed it. Though the bar was protected by sandbags from water coming in from the outside, clear sewage water had come up through the drains indoors and destroyed the floor all over again.

Along Dolores, sewage management workers were out keeping the drains cleared and amazingly the high winds early this morning did not fell any of the trees.

“They’re running at full capacity,” said Efren Campos, who was at Dolores and 18th clearing leaves from the drains. “My Motto: We get it done.”

A few branches were down on the side streets, but other than this, trees that everyone feared would easily be uprooted because of the long drought managed to cling to the ground.

In the southern half of the Mission, several businesses and residential buildings were without power for chunks of the morning. But rather than a whole sale blackout, the outages went block by block.

The eastern side of Mission Street, from 24th to 25th, lost power this morning, but not the western side. Most of the block of Valencia from 23rd to 22nd Street was quiet, but across 22nd Street it was business as usual with diners lined up outside of Boogaloos for brunch. Mission Local readers also reported of power outages on South Van Ness between 26th and 25th Streets and on sections of Bartlett Street.

At La Taqueria, employees waited in the darkened restaurant for power to come back on.

If it doesn’t come back on? “We’ll go home,” said employee Cesar Arrias with a laugh.

Traffic signals without power caused awkward traffic jams at 23rd and Valencia and Cesar Chavez and Valencia. Crews worked throughout the morning to restore them.

Elsewhere in the city, SFMTA reports that San Bruno and Montgomery BART stations are closed due to power outages. PG&E updates an outage map every 15 minutes, which can be found here. According to the map, at least 270 PG&E customers are without power in the Mission, part of well over 5000 around the city.

You can find more photos and video from various corners of the Mission below:

Here’s work crews cleaning the drains at Dolores and 18th Street:

Cleaning the Drains. from Mission Local on Vimeo.

The garage on a building on Folsom and 17th streets still had water several feet deep after hours of pumping and cleaning. Photo by Laura Wenus
The garage on a building on Folsom and 17th streets still had water several feet deep after hours of pumping and cleaning. Photo by Laura Wenus
The yard in front of the Cheese School slowly emptying of water Thursday morning. Photo by Laura Wenus
The yard in front of the Cheese School slowly emptying of water Thursday morning. Photo by Laura Wenus

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Andrea hails from Mexico City and lives in the Mission where she works as a community interpreter. She has been involved with Mission Local since 2009 working as a translator and reporter.

Daniel Hirsch is a freelance writer who has been living in the Mission since 2009. When he's not contributing to Mission Local, he's writing plays, working as an extra for HBO, and/or walking to the top of Bernal Hill.

Founder/Executive Editor. I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born and raised. Like many local news outlets, The Tribune no longer exists. I left daily newspapers after working at The New York Times for the business, foreign and city desks. Lucky for all of us, it is still there.

As an old friend once pointed out, local has long been in my bones. My Master’s Project at Columbia, later published in New York Magazine, was on New York City’s experiment in community boards.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how you make that long-held interest in local news sustainable. The answer continues to elude me.

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