San Francisco was taken down two notches on California’s coronavirus pandemic color scheme Monday, going back to the red tier amidst a pretty staggering rise in new coronavirus cases. So it’s excellent timing that Mayor London Breed’s office announced that the Alemany Farmers’ Market will become a free weekday COVID-19 testing site, effective Tuesday, November 17, in a move announced just about an hour before Gov. Newsom placed SF in the red tier again.
Starting tomorrow we'll be offering free COVID-19 testing fives day a week at Alemany Farmer’s Market, with capacity to test up to 500 people per day. https://t.co/QE3MHXoX4o— London Breed (@LondonBreed) November 16, 2020
This is technically not a new testing site, it’s a “reallocated” CitySF testing site that had previously been at Seventh and Brannan Streets in SoMa. Mission Local reported the move was coming last month with a view toward better equity in testing availability, but the specific opening date was just announced today. The reallocation hopes to better serve the particularly hard-hit Bayview-Hunters Point and Visitacion Valley neighborhoods.
“We have to adapt our strategy to where the need is greatest and locating more high-capacity, low barrier testing to the most impacted part of the city is the smart strategy,” Department of Public Health director Dr. Grant Colfax said in a statement. “As we experience a surge in cases in the city, the region and the nation, we must manage our public testing resources in the most efficient ways possible to slow the spread of the virus. Re-allocating these testing resources to the area of the city with highest rate of infection is critical to our response to the virus.”
The Alemany Farmers’ Market (the first ever in California, established in 1943!) is still taking place every Saturday, but with COVID-19 restrictions in place. The free COVID-19 testing is only available at the site Mondays through Fridays.
Advance online appointments for testing are encouraged, though the DPH says that "Alemany will take a limited number of drop-ins." The site is at 100 Alemany Boulevard, performing walk-through and drive-through testing. The COVID-19 testing hours are below.
Monday: 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Tuesday to Thursday: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.