New Details Emerge on IMA Pizza’s Decision to Quit Barracks Row – Decision May Not Be Final
by Larry Janezich
In a letter addressed to organizations and individuals involved in the effort to bring IMA Pizza to the 400 block of Barracks Row, prospective owner Steve Salis shed some light on his decision to forgo opening the pizza outlet at this time, though he held out the prospect that the decision could be revisited in the future.
The letter, dated February 6, described the economics which drove the decision. Salis pulled the plug on the project and parted on good terms with building owner Streetsense, after it became clear to him that he could not launch the business according to schedule in spring of this year. He cited the uncertainty involved in getting an exception to the ban on fast food on Barracks Row and the uncertainty as to when Streetsense could deliver the store space. Streetsense had asked Salis to “put down a substantial amount of capital as a deposit in order to hold the space.” He said he found his position untenable being faced with “a bad use of my capital and no guarantees” on how the process would be resolved.
Salis says that he and Streetsense mutually agreed that the best thing to do would be to put the property back on the market while Salis secured a lease in another neighborhood in order to meet his delivery goals. If the space is still unrented in a few months, Salis said he left the door open for the parties to re-engage in discussion to see if a deal can be worked out. Salis also said that this arrangement had the advantage of allowing him to work out operational kinks prior to coming to 8th Street.