Joelle Murry says her Toronto business has been growing but not enough to keep the doors open at Grinder Coffee.
“I’m sad, I’m not going to deny it. It’s not a good feeling,” Murray told Global News on Tuesday.
Murray’s shop has become famous thanks to special visits during the last two Toronto International Film Festivals.
Grinder attracted drop-ins from Tom Hanks and Ryan Gosling in back-to-back years after successful social media campaigns.
But the Hollywood hype didn’t translate into enough revenue to stay in business after Murray said her landlord tripled the lease from $2,000 a month to over $6,000.
“We hear in the news all the time about the increase in rents for residential and it’s the same for commercial space,” said Murray.
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Other shops in the Gerrard Street and Jones Avenue area where Grinder is located are also concerned about growing rent prices.
The Poison Ivy Tattoo shop has been in business for two years and the owner told Global News he couldn’t survive a 300 per cent rent increase.
“No, to be honest, no. And that’s what’s unfair. You know people are just trying to make it,” said owner Alessandro Von Richter.
There are no rent controls on commercial properties in Toronto.
Coun. Paula Fletcher said she believes there should be restrictions but said that initiative has to come from the provincial government.
“Unfortunately there is nothing to say except, [Premier] Doug, let’s have some rent controls for commercial properties.“
Grinder coffee will close Oct. 27.
Murray said she is looking for another location but so far doesn’t know if she’ll ever open again.
© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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