Detroit’s Bedrock Extends Rent Relief, Offers More Support for Small Business Tenants

Bedrock Detroit, a commercial real estate company and part of the Rock Family of Cos., has announced Bedrock Relaunch, a program that will offer enhancements to the rent relief program it began in March with three months of rent abatement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Detroit skyline
Bedrock Relaunch is designed to help small businesses get back on their feet following the COVID-19 pandemic as the state begins reopening. // Stock photo

Bedrock Detroit, a commercial real estate company and part of the Rock Family of Cos., has announced Bedrock Relaunch, a program that will offer enhancements to the rent relief program it began in March with three months of rent abatement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bedrock will provide all eligible operating restaurant and retail tenants the option to temporarily amend their leases to reflect the waiving of all rent and fees for the month of June as a grace period for ramping up business as government restrictions begin to loosen.

In addition, tenants can waive their base rent in favor of paying 7 percent of gross sales. Bedrock Detroit also will allow the application of tenants’ security deposits toward reopening costs and costs associated with space modifications and reconfigurations via reimbursement.

The lease amendments will span the remainder of 2020. In order to qualify for the program, Bedrock tenants must be currently operating as a retailer or food and beverage purveyor or be a new tenant that opens before Dec. 31, 2020. The tenants must have been in good standing related to their lease agreements prior to the pandemic business disruption.

“It is becoming clear that even when all businesses are able to reopen, it’s unlikely their sales volume will immediately return to pre-pandemic levels, and we want to make sure that rent payments aren’t a barrier to success,” says Matt Cullen, CEO of Bedrock. “Dan Gilbert founded Bedrock 10 years ago on the principle that a landlord should be an invested partner with each tenant as well as a responsible corporate citizen. We are committed to doing everything we can to make sure we all come out of this together, including looking into experiential initiatives that will help drive traffic back to storefronts.”

The company’s relief efforts began in March and offered small business and restaurant tenants rent abatement for the months of April, May, and June, as well as the launch of a small business resource page, available here.

Future phases of the relaunch are being thought out and may include sidewalk and street closures to increase safe dining capacity, converting parking lots into drive-in movie theaters, and special shopping events.

“Real estate leaders, entrepreneurs, and municipalities will need to come together to find creative solutions for a safe reopening of local economies,” Cullen says. “I believe main streets across America will look different for a while yet, but if we all work together, reopening can still be successful.”

Since March, Bedrock and the Rock Family of Cos. has committed millions to local businesses through rent relief, personal protective equipment procurement, and grant funding. Earlier this month, Bedrock helped launch the city’s Detroit Means Business program, which offers Detroit-based small businesses access to a playbook for safe reopening, financial resources, and webinar content.

Some Bedrock tenants have been able to stay open or maintain operations in some capacity. A list of these businesses is available here and will continue to be updated.

Bedrock specializes in acquiring, developing, leasing, financing, and managing commercial and residential buildings. Since its founding in 2011, Bedrock and its affiliates have invested and committed more than $5.6 billion to acquiring and developing more than 100 properties, including new construction of ground up developments in downtown Detroit and Cleveland.

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