It’s no secret…times are tough right now for businesses of all types. Retail is no exception. The news is full of stories about retailers cutting back, restructuring and slowing—if not completely stopping—growth. One thing I am consistently hearing from these retailers is that they won’t even consider expanding into a lifestyle center anymore. While I understand why they may think this is a smart move in today’s competitive environment, there are a number of factors that make lifestyle centers viable locations for many retailers. I work with both the developers of lifestyle centers and retailers looking for new space. I tell them both the same thing: the lifestyle center must have a creative tenant mix, the retail expenditures in the area have to be right, and the psychographics and demographics of the average shopper must make sense. I also tell the retailer to look closely at each lifestyle center individually. After all, not all lifestyle centers are created equal, and they may miss out on the “just right” location for their next store.