Our post about the new business destined for the East John Court retail space inspired Denise Benitez to share what she learned when she looked into moving her neighborhood yoga business into the new building. Here’s the e-mail Denise sent us:
The reason that the “East John Court” retail spaces have sat empty for lo these many months is because they are asking way above the market rate for the spaces. I own Seattle Yoga Arts down the street (mention this blog and get a free class!), and was excited when I saw the new building going up, as we could definitely use a bigger space. When I got the prospectus for tenants from the realtor, it was all fancy schmancy and was titled “Success Now Has an Address.” Gag. When I saw the prices they were charging, I thought they must be out of their minds. When I inquired whether they had any other tenants lined up, they said, yeah, “A coffee place and a dry cleaner.” Like we need another coffee place. And a dry cleaner isn’t exactly the first business I think of when I think of communicating upscale success. So, we’ll just stay in our humble little building between Teriyaki Madness and the 7-11 for the foreseeable future. I like the smell of teriyaki during the morning classes…better than the smell of success.
There you have it. We’ll try to get the other side of the story but the prospect of yet another coffee joint (probably a big chain that can afford the rent) definitely begs the question: What can the community do to work with developers to create realistic opportunities for honest-to-goodness small businesses?