Ashling Construction & Post 390

In Our Team on January 19, 2010 at 11:50 pm

I had lunch today at Post 390 with Tom Clark and Phil Ruggiero of Ashling Construction.

First, about the restaurant… Post 390 is a new 14,000 sf (huge!) restaurant in a recently completed mixed-use development (retail, condo, apartments) on Clarendon Street in Boston’s Back Bay.  Ashling built the place and it’s an impressive space – two floors, two bars, two kitchens and private dinning areas. The restaurant is off to a good start and is a great use for a portion of the first and second floors of the building.

Second, about the meeting… (read more)

The purpose of the meeting today was to talk about synergies between CityRetail and Ashling. I’ve been in touch with Tom over the last couple of years on various projects, believe Ashling to be one of the top restaurant builders in Massachusetts and see potential for future collaboration. Connecting with Tom and Phil was encouraging, as it reaffirmed many of my assumptions and conclusions re: the challenges of leasing and building restaurants. An element of the challenge is the lack of information with respect to the condition of restaurant spaces –  where are the utilities located, what are existing building systems, how can the kitchen hood be exhausted, etc. –  coupled with ambiguity regarding the actual cost of construction.  A good builder can help landlords and tenants unwrap these issues and foster a much more efficient and effective leasing process.  The CityRetail team has learned this first-hand, each of us working on multiple restaurant deals in 2009, none more complex and exciting than EVOO & Za (builder on this project is Cafco Construction, another one of the top restaurant builders in town).

In sum, part of our mission at CityRetail is facilitating the connection between Landlord and Tenant in conjunction with contractors, consultants, architects and municipalities. Identifying issues early on in the leasing process is the key to efficiency and transparency. CityRetail is positioned – surrounded by Ashling and others – to inject efficiency, reality and responsibility into the leasing process.

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