In this week’s edition of Retail Rap, I again touch on the downsizing phenomenon that we are seeing from big brands like Target, Wal-Mart and Office Depot and discuss why I think this may be a more important trend than many realize.
While the smaller stores are designed to address one of the traditional headaches of operating in densely developed urban areas — namely, the physical limitations and lack of space — other issues exist. Cities are still generally demanding higher rents (in some cases much higher rents) and will continue to present zoning and operational complications that pad sites in the suburbs do not. Basically, it would seem that national brands have reached the point where their saturation of many suburban markets has now made the untapped urban markets more appealing and worth these potential headaches.
Check out the full article from my recurring column, Retail Rap, at Chain Store Age.