As the rains continued to beat down today, businesses in the area near Folsom and 17th fought once more against nature and the area’s tendency to flood with the Stable Café estimating damage of $80,000 to $100,000.
More than a dozen businesses and homes were affected by rain that overwhelmed the area’s drainage system. As Mission Local wrote earlier, “The drainage problems from 14th to 18th streets between Folsom and Harrison streets date back to the mid-1800s, according to city officials. The area used to be a marsh; the city filled it around 1860 or 1870,” but there are on-going battles over whether the city did a good job as rains inevitably bring flooding.
“We have to throw everything out, cancel events and cover our employees’ salaries,” said Francisco Garcia, the manager, as he kept making calls to rearrange his scheduled catering events. The Stable is housed in a building with four other businesses.
The Stable’s prep and cooking area was completely overflown with sewage water, he said. They will be closed for a couple of days while the city cleans up the mess – a process that usually takes the city between two to five days, he said. Once it has been cleaned up, they have to take down the sheetrock walls and rebuild them.
Gallardos, a Mexican restaurant at 18th and Shotwell, experienced flooding of at least a two inches of rain water that flowed all the way to the back of its storage room, said Juan Gallardo, the owner.
“When we opened we thought it was dirty, but the water covered all of it (the floor),” he said.
Gallardo and his employees cleaned up with brooms and mops and hoped to be open by noon. Generally, the restaurant opens at 7 a.m.
Hans Art Automotive at 3121 17th St. got at least “one good foot of water,” said Sophia Chicas, the manager.
As soon as they got in this morning, Chicas and five of her employees swept out most of the water with a broom and waited for the city to come and acess the damage.
“Three cars have been damaged with water,” Chicas said. “The cars are low and it starts flooding (inside the car).” She prepared herself for calling the owners of the cars.
“We have to make that difficult phone call and people get angry,” she said.
Most of the businesses on Folsom near 17th Street had sandbags to prevent the water coming in, but even that was not enough.
Francisco Picaso, who has lived at 2106 Folsom St. for the past 43 years and also manages the adjoining properties, said there had been a lot of damage.
All three of his garages were flooded with a good two to three foot of water, he said. He started to get nervous about the rain at about 2:30 am. He put on his water resistant pants and boots and went downstairs to install the three pumps the city gave him last year to in case of flooding. The pumps have a hose that drains the water out to the street.
“This time we got ten inches more than last time,” he said referring to an earlier rain this year.
Picaso said most of his back yard had flooded, ruining his plants and a recently purchased barbecue.