Beat the Heat Wave by Visiting the New Stores Opening Near You!

Over the last few months, I’d noticed a number of new stores going in at Beachwood Place, my local mall. I’ve been shopping at this mall for over 10 years and I don’t recall there ever being this many “Opening This Summer” signs strung up across so many new store fronts. At first, I wondered if it was because the mall had changed their lease agreements or if it was the typical turnover associated with mall space. For the most part, I chalked it up as a part of the “lifespan” of a mall store. Then I started seeing a number of references to an RBC Capital Markets report stating that new store openings are at a five year high and are estimated to keep growing at this pace! There was even a reassessment made by RBC on their numbers that indicated the estimated 78,000 new stores was too low and it would, in fact, top 83,000 storefronts.

mall-resized-600RBC’s initial report stated that over 78,000 new stores will open over the next 24 months, with over 42,000 of them in the next 12 months. This projection represented an 11% increase over the year-end 2011 numbers which certainly explains the increase of stores I have seen moving in. Any open spaces in your local mall, community center, outlet center, or commercial complex will certainly start filling up with these sorts of record breaking numbers, especially since the downsizing of storefronts has minimized in the past year. If you’re wondering what will pop up in your neighborhood, the industries with the highest planned growth are in toys, men’s apparel, crafts, and pawn shops.

With all this anticipated growth, commercial management companies should begin to take stock of what spaces are available as the space will soon be at a premium. Rich Moore, an RBC REIT analyst and one of the report’s authors has been quoted as stating “all this demand with little supply begs the question – when will new retail development begin again in earnest?” The CoStar Group has predicted that retail space growth in 2013 will total approximately 37 million square feet, which is a significantly smaller amount than the anticipated 73 million square feet of new space anticipated in 2014.

So now you’ve got a reason to go to the mall when it’s 100° outside and the air conditioning in your home can’t quite keep up. Head over to the mall to get a bite to eat at the new Subway shop (they are planning on opening over 5,000 stores in the next 24 months) or at Five Guys Famous Burgers and Fries (opening over 1,200 new stores in the next 24 months), then walk around a bit to see what else is opening near you!


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