As I outlined over a year ago, I believe the board should explore the possibility of converting the space to a food court. This concept was provided to two of the (successful) board candidates last year, so I know they are aware of this but have totally ignored it. Every person that I share this concept with has stated it is a good idea that at least should be explored.
The bar could remain as is. The existing dining booths would be removed and replaced with 3 storefronts that would be leased to small, independent operators. Each operator would offer a different food style/type, which will result in a nice variety to residents. The board has expressed its opinion that the kitchen area is too large for the seating capacity. This actually is beneficial since each of the 3 storefronts would need their own exclusive kitchen and food prep area (to be done at their expense). Some of the remainder would be used as a shared common area for storage of dry goods (in lockers). By dividing the area into smaller segments, the rental rate for each operator would be reduced to a very affordable amount. Even $800/month would be very affordable and bring in nearly $40,000/year to SCA.
The existing seating would be a shared common area and maintained by a Common Area Maintenance fee. The CAM would also allow for a shared utility cost.
These small operators can operate on a much smaller revenue stream as they do not have to pay for a manager or franchise fees. They would compete with each other to provide the best food variety, quality and price point – a real benefit to the residents. Restaurants have a high failure rate and therefore, turnover can be expected. However, not all will fail at the same time and therefore, at least 2 would remain open until a replacement tenant is located.
Shouldn’t the board at least explore this concept before giving away $100,000 to $150,000 to an operator that will only be open a limited amount of time and have exclusive rights to cater to clubs – which provides no incentive to provide good food or service or reasonable prices ???