The Real Deal New York

Barclays Center retailers squeezed by rent hikes

August 25, 2013 02:00PM

From left, The Chocolate Room, Barclays Center

From left: the Chocolate Room, Barclays Center

Landlords of retail spaces within a half-mile radius of the Barclays Center have begun to significantly increase rents.

The idea of raising rents for shops and restaurants near the arena in Downtown Brooklyn has been talked about since the project was announced in 2008, Crain’s reported. But only now does it seem as though landlords are doing more than just talking about it.

For example, the landlord of the Chocolate Room, a 10-year-old dessert and coffee café at 86 Fifth Avenue, five blocks from the Barclays Center, is now demanding $13,500 a month, well above its current rent. Although Jon Josepher, owner of the Chocolate Room, has submitted a counteroffer of $7,000 a month, the landlord is refusing to budge.

Area landowners are arguing that the 18,000-seat arena will bring in enough business to local retailers to justify the rent hikes. Local store and restaurant owners, however, are arguing that this theoretical leap in revenue is nowhere to be seen. [Crain’s] – James Comtois

  • bobbi

    That’s not even close to the barclays, you assholes!..you’ll just say anything to further try and justify/cover up this idiotic bubble we once again find ourselves in..

    • cheflette

      It’s actually a short walk from the arena. I’ve been there and walked it. Pretty close, same neighborhood. Calm down.

      • bobbi

        It’s called sarcasm, you idiot.

  • barkomatic

    There is no way the Chocolate room is going to do enough business at that location to justify $13,500 in rent. It’s not an Apple store for crying out loud. What’s going to happen is that these businesses are going to be replaced with chains like Banana Republic and California Pizza Kitchen who can afford massive rents and want a toehold in “cool” Brooklyn. I blame Lena Dunham.

    • Crian Bashman

      Those type of retailers come in and it won’t be “cool” anymore.

  • brklynmind

    Chocolate Room isnt exactly cheap and frankly it could work with the crowds going to concerts and events at the arena – they may have to change the model a bit at that location to make it less a ‘date place’ and more a family fun place, but I think they are making a mistake pulling out of that location. (high end chocolatiers thrive in many high rent districts)

  • True Justice

    This is what’s wrong with reading articles. You’re supposed to hear both sides of the story. I know for a fact that they currently pay less than $2,000 per month. The landlord offered them $10,000 for two businesses, not $13,500 for one. And they counter-offered $4,500 for both businesses, not $7,000. I think you can understand now why they’re leaving.

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