Tear Down This Mall? No, Reinvent it.

It was bound to happen. Sooner or later, the convenience of shopping online would become the “only” way to shop. Suddenly, the idea of the super malls on large acre sites is no longer the most desirable trend. Although it appears this may be the beginning of the end for these supersized shopping malls, commercial real estate planners and designers are already creating “malls of the future.”

Malls Downsize
The innovative real estate planners and designers of these futuristic malls have a better idea: Design malls that connect to the realistic type of shopping customers find most convenient. Shopping online does not fill all the needs of shoppers. However, surprisingly shoppers still want to  shop in high end stores with the most recognizable brand names. Think mini Rodeo Drive in local towns and cities.

Signs of Changes to Come in Shopping Malls
The loss of rentals of smaller shops in large shopping malls is proof shoppers are ready for big changes. Mall planners and designers are artisans when it comes to remodeling shopping malls.Their first challenge is to create new concepts that will encourage shoppers to want to step away from their online shopping sprees long enough to have a look at the items they need in upscale stores. The signs of changes to come in shopping malls have already begun in many states throughout the U.S.

If you look at mall developer Westfield, they tend to be creating these type of village shopping centers. Their CEO Peter Lowy recently spoke on the subject at a conference at UCLA on the matter. “As a landlord, we’re investing in the real estate that retailers want to be in.” And that is in this new model of shopping mall.

The New Way to Shop
Any plan or design for these new shopping sites would look more like an exclusive shopping “village.” The hours of operation depend on the specific site location. In some places, this might mean stores open with hours that cater to the needs of shoppers who shop early mornings or late at night.

The smaller “village” style shopping sites would necessarily provide casual and high end restaurants, jewelry, apparel and cosmetics.   Book stores for browsers are also a “must have.” These types of shops offer items that are not found online or would be too costly or to valuable to ship. By keeping these items solely for their onsite stores, customer patronage increases.


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