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CITIES SERVICE OIL COMPANY v. HALLER. (05/26/58)

May 26, 1958

CITIES SERVICE OIL COMPANY, APPELLANT,
v.
HALLER.



Appeal, No. 183, Jan. T., 1958, from decree of Court of Common Pleas of Lancaster County, Equity Docket No. 11, Page 108, in case of Cities Service Oil Company v. J. Gilbert Haller et al. Decree affirmed; reargument refused June 17, 1958.

COUNSEL

John Milton Ranck, with him Theodore S. Danforth, Herbert S. Levy, and Appeal, Ranck, Levy & Appel, for appellant.

F. Lyman Windolph, with him James N. Lightner, and Windolph, Burkholder & Hartman, for appellees.

Before Jones, C.j., Bell, Musmanno, Arnold, Jones and Cohen, JJ.

Author: Arnold

[ 393 Pa. Page 27]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE ARNOLD

Cities Service Oil Company appeals from the lower court's refusal to decree specific performance of an option to purchase real estate, which option was included in other agreements entered into with the defendants.

On May 16, 1951, Cities Service was the owner of certain premises located on the corner of West James Street and Harrisburg Avenue in the city of Lancaster. On that day Cities Service entered into a distributorship sales agreement with Haller for a term of one year, with renewal rights. Subsequently, and on October 9, 1952, the same parties entered into three separate agreements, which were to be coterminous and coextensive with the sales agreement, namely: (1) an agreement of sale, whereby Cities Service agreed to sell and convey the said lot to Haller upon certain terms and conditions; (2) a lease agreement of the premises in issue from Haller to Cities Service, containing the option to purchase the premises; and (3) a lease agreement of the premises from Cities Service to Haller.

As a consequence of these unusual arrangements the following occurred: the property was conveyed to Haller for $1,000, by deed dated December 29, 1952; Haller erected thereon a gasoline station of unique design, for approximately $8,308.80, cost stipulated by

[ 393 Pa. Page 28]

    the parties. Pursuant to their agreements the parties continued their respective relationships until October 27, 1955, when by mutual consent*fn1 the sales agreement of May 16, 1951, was "terminated" by Cities Service and Haller (effective October 31, 1955); and, by the same instrument, the existing leases were also "cancelled and terminated" by the parties.

[ 393 Pa. Page 29]

Thereafter, by letter dated December 29, 1955, Cities Service notified Haller of its intention to purchase the premises under the provisions of the option clause of Haller's lease to Cities ...


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