Many traditional malls are experiencing sharp declines in sales and attendance resulting in stagnant growth and the emergence of abandoned malls across the country, a much different picture thanthe mid-1990s where close to 150 new malls were under construction each year. Experts cite changes in demographics, retail needs, and a never-ending cycle of new competition as some reasons for the dying of the American mall experience.
In a Miami Herald article published earlier this year, Chris Zahas of Leland Consulting Group asserts that it is possible for malls to thrive, but developers need to diversify their on-site offerings with hotels and recreational activities, all while creating true mixed-use neighborhoods that incorporate housing and office uses. The American Dream Miami, a new, 225-acre complex, promises just that – a vibrant district of shopping, living, and amusement activities, including an indoor ski slope and a skating rink similar to those at the company’s other two properties. It is possible, with the right mix of uses that goes well beyond just retail, that malls can stay relevant and serve as cultural and economic anchors in their communities.
To read the full Miami-Herald article, click here.
Image credit: Rendering of the American Dream Miami Mall - Mall of America owners, Triple Five.