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May 28, 2020

Premier Shopping Districts Are Particularly Vulnerable To Pandemic And May Need A Reset

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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.”

Premier Shopping Districts Are Particularly Vulnerable To Pandemic And May Need A Reset

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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Bisnow Readers Split On Work From Home's Future

 

Almost a third of Bisnow readers surveyed say they expect to shrink their company's office footprint post-pandemic, but 45% said the amount of space they currently have will remain unchanged.

Eight-hundred seventy-seven people responded to a Bisnow online poll between May 19 and May 27. Questions ranged from readers' thoughts on working from home and how remote work might change with a worker's life stage to how flexible office options attract talent.

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Here's How Offices Of The Future May Compete With Remote Work

Before the coronavirus stormed workplaces worldwide, the office sector had hummed along relatively unchanged for much of the past several decades.

Before the pandemic, about 10% of workers able to work remotely did so full time, and an additional 20% did so some of the time, according to Gartner. Now, chief financial officers the company surveyed indicate 19% of workers will go remote full time and 29% will go remote some of the time. 

In part, that change is also a result of workers' preferences for flexible work. Only 15% of workers want to work from the office full time, according to a survey conducted by CommercialCafé.

Now, months into a pandemic, commercial landlords are tasked with trying to lure companies permanently back from what has been, at least for some, a surprisingly successful experiment in remote work. Some may not be able to bring people back to their current properties. Those that do must reorient around helping foster collaboration, building company culture and boosting talent recruitment for occupants, experts told Bisnow.

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