You might recall that we have this whole project for a Potential New Space (PNS) just hanging out there while we are living our everyday normal PJP lives. On more than one occasion, I’ll feel like I’ve forgotten that one of my kids needs to be picked up from somewhere or that perhaps I’ve left my phone behind or that maybe our garage door at home is open…but then I realize that all the unnamed anxiety is really just the crushing weight of trying to figure out how to move PJP into a larger space. The struggle is real.
Here’s the need-to-know on how Potential New Space is progressing:
The unit we are considering (right next to Hyvee and The Southern Rose on Nifong, immediately around the corner from our current location) is exactly double our current square footage. On the upside, we can literally roll our equipment across the parking lot from old space to new space. And Hyvee trips become 100% easier when we are two doors down. On the downside, it was an Orange Leaf yogurt store and it looks like an Orange Leaf yogurt store. SO MUCH GREEN AND ORANGE. Whoever did their store design for the franchisees is dead to me.
I’ve received a lot of emails questioning our decision to move to another Kroenke Group leasehold, given he ranks at the bottom of the list entitled “People Super Easy to Work With”. And the truth is that there are few commercial spaces in this town that aren’t owned by The Kroenke Group. Narrow that down further by isolating places we liked and places we can afford and welp, the options fall away. This is Stan’s real estate world and we are all just living in it. Also, he isn’t a real estate billionaire because he really holds back on his real estate portfolio.
Our first hurdle was the discovery that the unit had an air conditioning system and duct work from 1983. Yep, you read that right - 1983. I was eight, Jeanne was 30, and PJP V. 1.0 wouldn’t bust on the scene for another 11 years. I will 100% spare you the details, but we’ve reached an agreement with the landlord that the HVAC and air ducts be replaced at the landlord’s cost.
The draft lease landed in my inbox last week, but I didn’t open it and print the FORTY TWO pages until today. I’m only about nine pages in of a line-by-line read, but I’m living my best former lawyer life. I even purchased a red felt tip pen for notes, which my daughter said was very Elle Woods of me. Yes, please.
I’ve read a number of provisions so far that I marked out in red and just wrote “NO”. When we signed our original lease over five years ago, I remember only taking a cursory read through it when signing. It is easier this time because I know what PJP needs in a lease to be successful. That said, commercial leasing is not for the faint of heart.
So, I’ll send my changes back over to the landlord this week and we will see where we can agree (and, I guess agree to disagree). When we first started this project, I envisioned a grand opening for Pi(e) Day…which is NEXT WEEK. So, if we can make it all work, let’s adjust our expectations to this summer. And as Peg always reminded me, “if” is a very big word. In the meantime, I’ll keep working with my red felt tip pen.