Backers of a Detour American Grille vow to open in The Commons next week, despite the city's plans to declare the Scotty's Burger Joint lease broken.
"We are very committed to Columbus and we are very committed to our workforce and we are so committed that we are planning to open our Detour next Monday," said Mark Maddox, the co-owner of MSCB Group LLC, which owns the company leasing the space in The Commons.
Mayor Kristen Brown and City Attorney Kelly Benjamin told Columbus City Council Monday night that under the current lease, the only restaurant permitted to operate there is Scotty's Burger Joint. By closing the Scotty's restaurant Dec. 31, Benjamin said the lease-holder breached terms of the agreement.
The city plans to present a letter to Greenhouse Restaurants Inc., a subsidiary of MSCB Group, at Thursday night's Redevelopment Commission meeting, notifying the company the lease has been breached and giving the company 15 days to repair the breach — that is, to reopen as a Scotty's.
However, Maddox said Tuesday that his company's attorneys have reached a different conclusion. Under their interpretation, if the restaurant does not reopen in The Commons by Monday, they believe they would then be violating the lease.
"The mayor needs to decide whether she wants to use taxpayer money to go to court in an attempt to close a local business and give pink slips to our 70 employees," Maddox said.
Read more details in Wednesday's Republic.