Maybe the Time Has Come for a Crazy, Impractical Idea to Improve Downtown Retail

By N. David Milder

INTRODUCTION

Given that the demand for retail space and storefront
locations has dropped significantly, and so many downtowns are having a tough
time finding tenants for vacant stores, one might argue that some out of the
box thinking might produce some positive results. Well, it has made me think
again of an idea I came up with about 15 years ago about how to make it easier
for downtowns to attract quality retailers. 
Unfortunately, when I shared it with the leaders of various statewide
organizations …

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LET’S GET REAL ABOUT DOWNTOWN RETAIL COMING BACK

By N. David Milder

INTRODUCTION

A few weeks ago, an article appeared in the Congress for
the New Urbanism’s ( CNU) online journal Public
Square titled “Why downtown retail is coming back ” (1).  While the article had some valid and
encouraging points, overall it blurred over a very complex situation in which
retail in different types of  downtowns
have different prospects for retail rejuvenation and growth. Most importantly,
there was no discussion of the enormous process of creative destruction that
the retail industry is experiencing, one that …

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Capturing “Up for Grabs Shoppers” is an Important Key to Downtown Retail Success

By N. David Milder

Who Are They?

Many downtown retail growth strategies are doomed because
they try to avoid some key facts. One is that, except in the very rarest of
rare situations, downtown retailers, be they new or old, large or small, must compete
for and win sufficient market share to prosper. Another, and closely related
fact,  is that beneath the venerated
“leaked” sales to merchants located beyond the downtown’s trade area, and the
45% of GAFO sales now being e-leaked to online merchants, is a group …

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