The ongoing saga of the Grand Central Shake Shack has reached an end as Zocalo, the overpriced and decidedly mediocre restaurant, closed at end of April paving the way for Shake Shack to open, Crain’s New York reports today. After numerous legal challenges that failed and a bankruptcy declaration last fall, Zocalo and its owners decided to comply with a vacate order set to come due on April 30, and now Danny Meyer’s burger chain will move in.
For the MTA, this move is a boost to the money it draws in from Grand Central’s lower level food market spaces. Zocalo had been paying a minimum rent of $336,698 per year while Shake Shack’s lease starts at $435,000 a year with escalators to $567,000 by year ten. Meyer’s group will also pay a percentage of gross sales to the agency. “We are pleased to be able to move forward at last with our ongoing effort to re-bid the retail spaces in Grand Central,” an MTA spokesman said to Crain’s. “Doing so in a regularized, periodic way ensures that the public receives the maximum benefit for this valuable retail space.”
Say what you will about Shake Shack’s food — and plenty of people have plenty of opinions on those burgers and fries — but this place will mint money in the food court at Grand Central.