Legacy Business Nomination & Application

About The Legacy Business Registry

The purpose of the Legacy Business Registry is to recognize that longstanding, community-serving businesses can be valuable cultural assets to the City. In addition, the City intends that the Registry be a tool for providing educational and promotional assistance to Legacy Businesses to encourage their continued viability and success. Businesses on Legacy Businesses Registry are eligible to participate in the Legacy Business Preservation Fund. Nominations for the Registry shall be limited to a total of 300 per year. (July 1 to June 30)

The Legacy Business Registry is authorized by Section 2A.242 of the San Francisco Administrative Code. The registration process includes nomination by the Mayor or a member of the Board of Supervisors, a written application, an advisory recommendation from the Historical Preservation Commission, and approval of the Small Business Commission.


Business Eligibility Criteria

A Legacy Business is a business that has been nominated by the Mayor or a member of the Board of Supervisors, and that the Small Business Commission, after a noticed hearing, has determined it is a legacy based on the following criteria:

  1. The business has operated in San Francisco for 30 or more years, with no break in San Francisco operations exceeding two years. If the business has operated in San Francisco for more than 20 years but less than 30 years it may still satisfy this criteria if the Small Business Commission finds that the business has significantly contributed to the history or identity of a particular neighborhood or community and, if not included in the Registry, the business would face a significant risk of displacement.

  2. The business has contributed to the neighborhood's history and/or the identity of a particular neighborhood or community.

  3. The business is committed to maintaining the physical features or traditions that define the business, including craft, culinary, or art forms.

The Registration Process

The Mayor of San Francisco or a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors submits a letter of nomination to the Office of Small Business (OSB).
  1. Along with the letter of nomination, the applicant submits an application to the Office of Small Business along with the filing fee.

  2. Once the application is determined to be completed, the application is routed to the Historical Preservation Commission for an advisory recommendation as to whether the business meets the requirements of item number two under the Business Eligibility Criteria.

    The Historical Preservation Commission has 30 days to provide an advisory recommendation. If the Historical Preservation Commission does not provide an advisory recommendation with 30 days of receipt of the request, it shall be considered a recommendation that meet all the requirements of item #2 of the business eligibility requirements.

  3. A final hearing is scheduled at the Small Business Commission.The SBC will hear public testimony and determine if the business meets the criteria for legacy registration. The Commission will then vote whether to certify the business for the Legacy Business Registry.

Instructions for Submission

Please submit the following:
  1. Completed application with the following items:
  • Business and Applicant Information.
  • Business Location(s).
  • Disclosure Statement.
  • Written Historical Narrative.
  • Supplemental Historical Documents (photo, articles, etc.).
  1. Application fee: $50.00 non-refundable check
    Check payable to: “City and County of San Francisco - Office of Small Business" or "CCSF-OSB"
Email Application to:
Or Mail Application to:

Office of Small Business
Attn: Legacy Business Program
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
City Hall, Room 140
San Francisco, 94102

You will receive an email confirming receipt of your application and a follow-up response when the application is reviewed.

Program Documents

Legacy Business Application Form (PDF)
Legacy Business Application

Process for Nominees (PDF)
Legacy Business Program Nominators Process

Instructions for Nominators (PDF)
Legacy Business Program Nominators Process

For More Information

If you have questions or need assistance regarding the application requirements and process, please contact:

Office of Small Business
(415) 554-6680

Si usted tiene alguna pregunta o necesita ayuda acerca de los requisitos de la solicitud y el proceso, comuníquese:
Oficina de la pequeña empresa
(415) 554-6680

如果您對於申請要求及程序有任何疑問或需要協助, 請聯繫:
(415) 554-6680

Kung mayroon kang anumang mga tanong o kailangan ng tulong tungkol sa kinakailangan at proseso ng aplikasyon, mangyaring makipag-ugnay sa kawani ng:
Opisina ng Maliit na Negosyo
(415) 554-6680


SF Heritage  

SF Heritage

The Historical Research Guide is used to perform historic property research in the City of San Francisco.

SF Historic Preservation  

Historic Preservation Commission

The Historic Preservation Commission is responsible for identifying and designating San Francisco landmarks and buildings in the City's historic districts. It consists of seven Commissioners and a Commission Secretary.


SF Public Library - San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection

Located in the San Francisco History Center on the 6th Floor, the Historical Photograph Collection contains photographs and works on paper of San Francisco and California views from 1850 to present.


DataSF - Registered Business Locations

Registered businesses in San Francisco maintained by the Office of Treasurer-Tax Collector, including business locations that have been sold, closed, or moved our of San Francisco. Each registered business can have one or many locations. Each record represents a single location. This dataset is updated weekly.


Small Business Commission

The Small Business Commission (SBC) oversees the Office of Small Business, which is the City's central point of information and resources for entrepreneurs and small businesses located in San Francisco.