City stops rent increase at Little Annie’s building
The Aspen City Council unanimously passed a deed restriction on the Little Annie’s building that will regulate rental rates and menu prices.
Over the past few months, city staff and the building’s owner, Aspen Core LLC, have worked together to draft a deed restriction that meets both the city and the applicant’s goals.
The city’s deed with the Little Annie’s building, located at 517 E. Hyman Ave., includes preservation of the physical structure as well as a guarantee that whatever restaurant occupies the space remain affordably priced. It is currently occupied by Little Annie’s Eating House.
One of the city’s primary concerns with the applicant’s deed was its proposed management, maintenance and capital reserve fees.
The council unanimously denied the fee proposal that would have increased the rent by 8.2 percent.
City staff looked at the Justice Snow’s restaurant as a point of comparison for some of the issues faced with the Little Annie’s deed. The city leases Justice Snow’s its space at the Wheeler Opera House.
According to a memo to the council from City Attorney Jim True and senior planner Sara Adams, Justice Snow’s pays an annual base rent of roughly $121,000 along with a percentage of profits, which added another $43,000 in 2014 alone.
Andy and Nikos Hecht, principals of Aspen Core Ventures, didn’t attend the meeting. Lex Tarumianz, who represented the applicant, said he will check with owners to see if they approve the deed passed by council.
While there is no deadline for them to come back before the council, the owners cannot receive a certificate of occupancy until the deed restriction is recorded, according to True.
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