Chicago’s Magnificent Mile is one the nation’s top shopping districts, famous for its swanky shops, flagship stores and tourist attractions. But this year’s economic shocks further damaged several of its retailers, and the street’s already-high vacancy rate seems likely to keep climbing in 2020.
The sharpest recent blow was Canadian apparel retailer Roots’ late April decision to close seven U.S. stores, including an 11K SF flagship opened last May on two floors at 605 North Michigan Ave.
“That will certainly add a couple of percentage points to the vacancy rate,” Magnificent Mile Association CEO Kimberly Bares said. “The pandemic has certainly laid bare some retailers’ vulnerabilities and put them front and center.”
Internet competition continues to gut many famous retail brands, and layering in coronavirus-related shutdowns puts tremendous pressure on beleaguered outlets. That is happening throughout the retail sector, but premier shopping districts like the Magnificent Mile across the U.S. are particularly vulnerable, as their landlords typically charge high rents, frequently for…
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