“While the crowds — who numbered around twelve hundred at opening, according to Apple’s official count — may have been expected, the store’s special guests were not. Many anticipated company CEO Steve Jobs would be on hand to open the store, but few could have guessed that the company would have both current Mayor Gavin Newsom as well as San Francisco’s former mayor Willie Brown in attendance to cut the ribbon. It was under Mayor Brown’s guidance that the city undertook many of the rehabilitation programs that helped to reshape the area,” David Schloss reports for MacCentral.
“‘I think this signals confidence in the retail quality of this area,’ said a beaming Brown from inside the Apple store while employees and customers clapped and danced to booming music. ‘It represents a second step in the development of the Union Square region. The refurbishment of Union Square [itself] was the first step, The private sector development and the opening of the Apple Store is the second,'” Schloss reports.
“The city’s current Mayor, Gavin Newsom couldn’t agree more. …Mayor Newsom waxed philosophic on the significance of Apple’s investment in the region. ‘I think that this store is significant [for this area]. Obviously this is an extraordinary brand with significant character. I think this side of the street has struggled more,’ said Mayor Newsom of the part of Union Square south of Powell, which has spent less time in the spotlight than the shops closer to cable cars and the park,” Schloss reports. “‘I think that it’s significant that [Apple has] found themselves in an area between the manufacturing regions and the commercial regions of the city. They are anticipating a commercial trend that I think is inevitable and they are going to be the heart of it.’ …If today’s enthusiastic crowds were any indication, it’s an investment that will pay off many times over.”
Full article here.
MacNN has posted a photo gallery of the opening here. MacNN reports opening crowd in excess of 1,500.
Quicktime movies of the opening lines and festivities here.