Mike Peabody reported today that, as GM predicted, an agreement has been reached to save Scheele’s Market long into the future. The agreement involves an incredibly creative solution to the problem faced by the Save Scheele’s group: namely how can they come up with a legally binding way to ensure that a market will remain on the property without owning the building outright. The solution: they’ll lease it themselves. Peabody’s email explaining it all after the jump:
June 8, 2009
I wish to inform you that we have reached an agreement with Mr. Teren who holds the contract to purchase Scheele’s. The terms would allow us to lease the store for a significant number of years and sublease it back to Mr. Teren as long as he is carrying out his plans to lease it out to a grocery store operator (initially, Mr. and Mrs. Lee). Should he decide not to do so, we would be free to lease to the Lees or another tenant who would continue the store.
The lease will be held by an entity that we would set up which hopefully will enjoy 501(c)3 status and that entity would pay Mr. Teren a significant sum in return for the lease which sum would be used to help renovate the store. We have asked the Scheeles and Mr. Teren to extend our TOPA rights until July 3rd, during which time we can develop and sign a formal agreement involving all parties. Both have agreed to do so.
I can be more specific when the terms are reduced to writing and agreed to by all parties. At that time we will contact you again.
We will then need to start a campaign to raise the money necessary to fulfill the agreement and we will need volunteers to help us develop lists of prospects and aid us in contacting them. If you are willing to help in this way, please respond to this notice. We are very encouraged by this progress and look forward to working with you.
Malcolm (Mike) Peabody Marilyn Melkonian
A huge thanks goes out to Mike, Marilyn and anyone else who contributed their time to the effort. It appears that the market will be saved for many more years and that it is very likely, at least, that the Lees will get to continue to operate the market as they have for 20 years. While it is not a done, done, deal, it seems the East Village can finally exhale.