Construction delays are causing problems at the shopping mall located within the Santiago Calatrava-designed World Trade Center Transportation Hub. Chief among those problems is the fact that retail tenants are walking away. Four tenants have already backed out of leases less than a month before the scheduled opening on August 16, The Real Deal reports.
The mall will be operated by Westfield, and the way companies like that usually negotiate leases with prospective tenants is to ensure them that about 70 to 85 percent of the mall will be leased out by the time they open shop. But if that threshold isn’t met then tenants are allowed to pay just a percentage of their rent. This lack of income is likely to further hamper Westfield’s progress as it moves towards completion, according to TRD.
Westfield has control over the retail space in the building on a 99-year lease, and the project has been riddled with construction issues since it started in 2007. The four retailers who have backed out are Dune London, Bebe, True Religion, and coffee shop Fika. Furthermore, clothing giant H&M, which has leased a 25,000 square foot space in the building will likely be unable to meet the opening day deadline either, sources told TRD.