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Snap shutters SoMa office in (yet another) blow to city’s commercial revival

Sales tax data is a major indicator of economic activity, as shown by its dramatic drop nationwide in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Snap, which owns the popular social media app Snapchat, said it was closing the doors on its San Francisco office in SoMa.

Employees who work at the office, located at 875 Howard St., will have access to co-working space in the city, according to reports.

"Our San Francisco location was lightly used by team members following our move to flexible work,” Snap said in a statement to Bloomberg on Friday.

The closure follows a spate of tech company relocations and layoffs in San Francisco that continue to raise questions about the city's ability to cope with the changes to office work wrought by the pandemic.

The city's downtown core once accounted for most of San Francisco’s GDP, 70% of its sales tax revenue and 40% of the city’s jobs. With the potential for a commercial real estate crash looming, and news like Snap's SF office closure coming in at a steady clip, a coalition of business leaders continues to worry about exactly how far-reaching the pandemic's impact on SF will be.

Snap rival Twitter, once a revitalizing force in Mid-Market, closed one of its SF offices this summer and consolidated it into its Market Street headquarters. Twitter's new owner, Elon Musk, recently told investors he plans to slash nearly 75% of the company’s staff, leaving an even bleaker outlook for the area.

Leases signed by Block, Uber, Airbnb and DoorDash in the neighborhood expire over the next few years, casting a further pall over the business district.

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