Mayor London Breed and Supervisors Engardio and Melgar Announce Grants for Small Businesses on Taraval Street

Grants will come from funding dedicated to small businesses impacted by SFMTA construction projects
February 14, 2024

San Francisco, CA – Today Mayor London N. Breed and Supervisors Joel Engardio and Myrna Melgar announced that new small business funding for MTA construction impacts will go towards supporting Taraval merchants impacted by the L Taraval Improvement Project.    

The funding will come from small business relief funding currently moving through the Board of Supervisors. $1 million of that package is dedicated to small businesses that are impacted by transit related projects. This funding will be used to provide small business grants on Taraval. The proposal also includes funding for businesses impacted by APEC, free transit on the Day of the Chinese New Year Parade and parking at Portsmouth Square garage all February. This proposal is scheduled for full Board approval on February 27th.  

“As we work to make important improvements to our infrastructure, we must continue to do everything we can to support our small businesses in this City,” said Mayor London Breed. “Taraval Street is an important merchant corridor, and we know that there have been some real challenges during this construction project. We are listening to our merchants, and our goal is to support them so they can continue to thrive.”  

“Taraval merchants have faced years of disruptions and are at the mercy of the SFMTA to finish this project as promised by the end of this year. Some businesses reported a loss of up to 70 percent of their sales. It will be a travesty if we have brand new train tracks serving a corridor without any businesses. That’s why I worked with the budget chair and the director of the Office of Small Business to request that $1 million of the leftover APEC fund go toward helping the businesses suffering on Taraval,” said Supervisor Joel Engardio, who represents the Sunset district. “We are one city. We can help businesses who suffered last fall and those who continue to suffer today. Taraval is in code blue. It’s at risk of dying. We must come together to help a major and vital part of our city. Spending a portion of the APEC funds to help Taraval is about saving businesses and our tax base, which benefits the whole city.”  

“I am thrilled that we have developed a plan to help Taraval Merchants for the brutal years of construction that has happened along the Taraval corridor,” said District 7 Supervisor Myrna Melgar. “These merchants are the life blood of our City and we will continue to find ways to support them. We look forward to a completed project in the Fall of this year.”  

The L Taraval project will increase pedestrian and transit rider safety, expand accessibility, improve transit reliability, rehabilitate water and sewer infrastructure, enhance landscaping and replace road pavement along the L Taraval line. The project is expected to complete construction in the Fall 2024.   

During the time of construction, businesses have seen disruptions related to construction impacts. While city agencies have worked to mitigate these impacts through different initiatives, there is still a need for more direct support.  

SFMTA has adjusted temporary staging locations based on community feedback, added mid-block crossings to accommodate seniors who were walking over the construction project, added angled parking to expand the number of parking spaces, adjusted during holidays and honored construction moratorium from Thanksgiving to the New Year for each year of the project.  

The SFMTA project team provided regular updates to the community via email, the website and door-to-door noticing. Additionally, the project team has also provided continued updates to the community via email, the website ( and door-to-door noticing. The community is encouraged to have updates delivered to their phone or email by signing up on the project page.   

Outreach is key to ensuring residents and merchants are informed of updates and milestones of the project. Team members from SFMTA, the Office of Economic Workforce and Development (OEWD), the Office of Small Business (OSB), Supervisor Engardio’s office and construction partners have attended merchant and resident meetings, walked the corridor to speak to businesses and distribute flyers about the project.   

Ongoing support from the City for impacted businesses include distribution of the Taraval Resource Guide; creating a marketing campaign, ‘Take Time for Taraval,’ which spotlights Taraval businesses, and created promotional spotlight videos of businesses on Taraval.  

The city will continue to work with the community to bring more foot traffic into the neighborhood through marketing and other events and activations to promote and bring people into the neighborhood which are being curated and organized on Taraval over the next few months with our community partners. 

Today, Mayor Breed and Supervisor Engardio met with Taraval merchants to discuss this relief funding, as well as other ways the city can continue to support small businesses on Taraval.