End of road for tenant

ONE of Mandurah Forum�s longest standing tenants will not be part of the redevelopment after its lease was not renewed.

Up Town Coffee Lounge is one of the original tenants at the forum shopping centre, which is owned by Federation Centres (FC).

Owner Jenine Taylor said she received the news via a hand-delivered letter.

�It was a complete and utter shock,� she said.

�It�s been a fairly big blow for myself and my husband.�

It began in March when she notified centre manager Nigel Haimes of her desire to start the process of renewing their lease, which was scheduled to expire in November.

She heard nothing for a month and sent a reminder message.

Later that day, she received a phone call from FC senior leasing executive Simon Wells.

�He didn�t commit to anything and really just spoke about the redevelopment,� she said.

�I was upset so my husband rang him and he got the same response, except that he (Simon) would know more in a couple of months.

�We both got the feeling that whatever was going on it was not in our favour, however we were not 100 per cent sure.�

Within a week, they received a hand-delivered letter at the coffee lounge.

�I was not prepared for what was in that envelope; it stated they would not be renewing our lease due to redevelopment and vacant possession of the premises would be required in due course,� she said.

There was an option for a month-by-month renewal.

�I don�t know what is the best thing to do; it may be three months after the lease ends before they want us to vacate the premises,� she said.

An FC spokesman said the company would work with existing and new retailers.

�We will continue to work closely with our local retailers,� he said.

�We cannot release information on individual lease agreements as leases are commercial in confidence.�

Mrs Taylor said her staff were disgusted and upset.

�Why didn�t council ask during the submissions if small business will be affected?� she said.

City of Mandurah chief executive Mark Newman said commercial aspects of leases were not considered for submissions.

�The commercial position regarding existing and future tenants is not a relevant planning consideration, as set out in the State Government�s planning legislation and therefore cannot be taken into account,� he said.