You look on the news you see 125 year old department stores filing for bankruptcy.It may be looking leak for retailers but retail isn’t dying. The best performing malls are always upscale. They have various stores that carry luxury goods or adjacent to a high income neighborhood. There will always be retail. Retail is evolving to the demands of retirees and the newer generations of consumers. Realtors and Real Estate Professionals know the real estate is always in demand. There isn’t more land being created. Just repurposing and development of existing land. Much like the sugar factories of the 19th century have become luxury apartments in the 21st century. The physical space of malls can be rebranded. Easton mall in Columbus,Ohio presents future for retail. Less department stores but more overall experience stores. There are apartment units,a movie theater, 5 star restaurants and much more. The mall has more in common with a town or gated community than a shopping mall. Looking overseas for inspiration, Realtors will benefit heavily for the rebirth of retail.
A city within a city
A city within a city will be common place as more cities around the globe amass more than 10 million people (larger than the population of New York City). Hong Kong has been doing this for decades. Hong Kong’s Public Transportation Provider is also a real estate provider. The company built malls at major subway stations. Thousands of people daily work,live and shop in the same region due to the foot traffic around subway stops.
Shopping online vs Shopping locally
Ecommerce has made shopping more convenient. People are willing to shop locally if they can get what they want same day. Malls will expand from places people shop to places where people live and experience new things. Wellness,entertainment ,learning and personalized shopping in one place.
Inspiration from Abroad
In the Philippines the largest mall in sea is implementing robotic technology in the next 5 months. They will have personalized drones with touch pads to improve the customer experience. AI and Big Data is currently being used by retailers to improve information on the spending habits. Recently target was under fire for using their big data to send a teenage girl prenatal vitamins based off her search history. There is alot of concerns about privacy. Some of the other major malls are Xanadu in spain and the mall of the emirates in dubai. Both of these malls have an immersive entertainment space like a ski slope or museum.
Malls will become more niched to customer needs. Like a mall with offering geared to retirees or a mall geared for newlyweds or single urban professionals. A mall geared to retirees may have a pharmacy,gym,lawyers,estate planning accountants and a cruise travel agency. While a mall geared for urban professionals will have restaurants, gyms, nightclubs, co-working spaces, and much more. In Japan some developers are dealing the large population of retirees by repurposing their malls. Realtors can take advantage of this trend. Any vacant mall can be reinvigorated with mixed use units. Something as simple as a green space can improve sales on mixed use property. People are more geared towards health improvement more than ever. With a green space people can gather, meditate and exercise with lush greenery. In some metropolitan spaces green spaces are mixed with urban gardens. This will allow access to organic produce at a low cost . Farm to table healthy food without the expense of shipping.
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