Navigation

About Us

PlaceMade’s mission is to secure long-term affordable industrial space to support a vibrant manufacturing sector in San Francisco, in order to sustain companies producing locally-made products and thus create employment opportunities for a diverse local workforce.

PlaceMade was conceived and launched by SFMade, the only organization of its kind in San Francisco focused on building San Francisco’s economic base by developing the local manufacturing sector. Manufacturing contributes to a vibrant and diverse local economy by creating quality jobs for people from all walks of life.

Learn how we work to support the development of industrial space.


CALL TO ACTION

Since the 1970’s the US manufacturing sector had been contracting, with significant off-shoring of manufacturing jobs and resulting growth in income disparity. In recent years, however, a new breed of urban-based manufacturer has emerged – combining new manufacturing technologies with craft and artisan skills, and innovative design with growing consumer preferences for locally produced goods, particularly those with a smaller environmental footprint. In the B-to-B sectors, integration of design, prototyping, and production enables makers of sophisticated high-tech products to respond quickly to the needs of other companies. In the consumer markets the trend is most evident in food, fashion, and furnishings where innovation, design, and proximity create strong advantages.
Here in San Francisco the local manufacturing sector has been well-outpacing the growth of the economy as a whole. Local manufacturing has proven to be a vibrant, diverse economic actor in San Francisco’s local economy: close 30% of the sector is comprised of manufacturers who are younger than 30 years old, almost 50% of the companies are woman-owned, and 70% of the over 4,000 jobs currently sustained by SFMade’s more than 550 companies are held by immigrants, veterans, adults and youth from low-income households, and others with barriers to employment.
The dramatic growth of local manufacturing, however, has also begun to uncover several “infrastructure” challenges, which, if left unmitigated, threaten to constrain the job-generating potential of San Francisco’s manufacturing sector just as it gains steam.
As the size of the local manufacturing sector - and the size of some manufacturers – has grown - increasing pressure is being placed on San Francisco’s already tight commercial real estate market to find adequate space. Urban manufacturers cannot afford to pay rent levels sufficient to underwrite the acquisition and development (or significant rehabilitation) of appropriate high-quality manufacturing space without some additional subsidy.

PlaceMade ensures that urban manufacturers are successful in finding affordable, long-term space to stay in San Francisco as they both grow the business and jobs for the City’s low-moderate income residents.