By JOHN T. WARD
Or, to be more precise, a Subway franchisee will replace the one evicted three months ago after failing to show up for more than four years, according to the landlord.Mike Morgan Jr., who owns the building at 60 Broad Street with his father and brother, said the new franchisee signed a lease Monday and has already filed paperwork with the borough in the hopes of converting a temporary certificate of occupancy issued long ago to a permanent one.
“They want to open as soon as possible,” Morgan said, adding that the new tenant has made arrangements for a cleaning crew to scour the space, which is outfitted with all-new, but never-used, kitchen equipment.
Franchisee Ojas Patel won approval from the borough planning board in October, 2011 to create a 28-seat “café” version of Subway, a concept he said was then in operation at only in three other locations nationwide.
But Patel never took occupancy of the space, and after what Morgan called “lengthy legal proceedings,” was evicted in December.
Afterward, Morgan said, the parent franchisor stepped in. “They didn’t want to let go of that space,” Morgan told Churn on Tuesday. The company then offered the slot to existing franchisees as a “kind of reward,” he said.
Morgan didn’t immediately have the name of the new tenant available. He said the franchisee operates one or more Subway shops in Middlesex County.
“At the end of the day, it’s a mom-and-pop,” he said. “This is a family that’s running it. They know Red Bank, and they’re very excited to be coming here.