GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Gather GVL, an outdoor food court venue in downtown Greenville, filed a lawsuit against six of its partners in a rent dispute.
The lawsuit was filed on June 8 against Cocobowlz, Saki Saki Hibachi and Poke Bowls, Sweet Sippin, West End Coffee Bar, Prost! and Rocky Moo.
According to the lawsuit, Gather GVL filed the lawsuit over disagreements about the “possession date” for each company, how much “free rent” each company is entitled to due to not opening the business on time and for some companies not operating their businesses full time during Phase 2 of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Each company has an individual contract with Gather GVL. In those contracts, each tenant had a “possession date” for when they would be able to gain access to their space within the food court venue. In the contracts, it talked about the tenant having the options to get out of the contract, get their security deposit back and to receive free rent for however many days the possession date was delayed.
Now, Gather GVL is asking for the court to decide what the “possession date” is for each company and how much free rent each company should be entitled to per their contracts.
The also lawsuit explained the tenants agreed in their contracts to operate on a full-time basis while the business is open, but some companies limited their hours due the pandemic.
Greenville County circuit judge is scheduled to hear the case on August 19, according to one of the Gather GVL owners.
Gather GVL provided this statement to 7 News:
Gather GVL (“Gather”) is a unique food court venue in downtown where friends and families can engage in a casual, exciting atmosphere in which local restaurateurs and brewers hone their craft and do some delicious experimenting. It is so unique that its permitting and construction process were largely uncharted territory for South Carolina and that resulted in substantial delays in getting Gather open for business.
As a result of the delays, since its opening, Gather’s tenants have taken different approaches to certain lease provisions regarding the payment of rent, common area maintenance and a “promotional fund” to benefit all tenants based on each’s interpretation of how the terms “Possession Date” and “free rent” are defined in the respective leases. Gather found several of the tenant’s positions that they were entitled to rent credits for a year or more in violation of the respective lease’s terms, inequitable and untenable. Of lesser contention, especially in light of the current pandemic, the respective leases also have certain operation hour requirements to which the tenants have taken different approaches. As the parties have been unable to resolve these issues amongst themselves, Gather has asked the Court to interpret the leases and make a conclusive determination of each’s rights and responsibilities.
Gather looks forward to resolving these issues in a mutually agreeable way or to having clarity from the Court and even more to the success of our tenant partners and the venue as a whole.