I bet you didn't know that Citgo pays "rent" on its sign that sits in Kenmore Square. Well this 'tenant' and it's new landlord seem like they can't agree on the rent.
The Venezuelan-owned oil company that leases the rooftop at 660 Beacon St. where the neon landmark sits, and the landlord (Related Beal, the New York developer that bought the building in October), are locked in a stalemate over how much Citgo Petroleum Corp. should pay to rent the perch for a sign that serves as a backdrop to Fenway Park and as a beacon as runners near the Boston Marathon’s finish line.
Citgo’s lease is set to expire just days before the Red Sox home opener (Monday, April 3).
The standoff is the latest chapter in a yearlong saga over the electronic billboard’s future. And it highlights the challenge of conducting private negotiations about a very public monument. Each side believes it is in the right, but neither wants to be responsible for taking down a beloved piece of the Boston skyline.
So how much is their rent for the famous sign?
Some people familiar with the matter said Citgo pays about $250,000 a year. Related, these people said, initially proposed a figure as much as 10 times that, noting the site’s potential value on the open market. Other people in the 'appraisal biz', say a sign like the Citgo Fenway one could get up to $2 - $2.5 million dollars if it ever went up for sale on the open market because it is a 'one-of-a-kind' purchase.
Citgo is stepping up its bid for public support to keep the sign as is and they NEED OUR HELP.
In February, the company signed on as a sponsor of the Marathon, after a lengthy absence, and will host a cheering party beneath the sign next month. And yesterday (2/27/17), Citgo officials hosted a meeting at the Commonwealth Hotel in Kenmore Square to gauge support from preservationists, neighborhood leaders, and other fans of the sign.
Hopefully they can keep it where it is ... as I feel and I'm sure you do as well, it is a part of our Boston history now. #SaveCitgoSign