The $7 Million Feud Between Applebee's And Times Square Landlord

Owning a business in Times Square comes with some pretty appealing benefits. The foot traffic alone could bring in countless customers per day. The Times Square Alliance reports the area represents 7% of New York City's jobs and 15% (or $107 billion) of the city's economy.

But Times Square rents are pricey, to say the least. In 2018, McDonald's paid $11.5 million for its Times Square restaurant rent (via The Real Deal). A quick scroll through Property Shark's website yields several Times Square Theater District retail sites marked "contact for pricing," leading us to believe rent must be fairly expensive. It's easy to imagine expenses getting out of hand and rent becoming difficult to pay, especially for restaurants in the post-COVID-19 pandemic era.

These factors and other "cash flow issues" (via Eater NY) were brought to light recently when a Times Square landlord brought the area's Applebee's restaurant to court over unpaid rent.

Applebee's Time Square will be evicted

Crain's New York Business reports that the Applebee's restaurant in Times Square, New York will be forced to pay $7 million and will be evicted from its location. This is per a court decision recently made in a Manhattan state Supreme Court because the restaurant has failed to pay rent and other "expenses." Eater NY says the Applebee's back rent dates all the way back to June 2019 and the decision comes after the restaurant and landlord, Madison International Realty, were unable to reach an agreement on the issue. Applebee's says the financial issues were only exacerbated by the pandemic. Due to the lack of payment, its lease was terminated by the landlord in October 2021.

As of this writing, social media followers are just starting to comment with their thoughts on posts from Crain's New York Business and Eater NY's Facebook pages, but one user on Twitter commented with a GIF with the caption "YIKES."