The future of retail is mixed-use.
Gone are the days of malls as we know them, and forward-thinking retailers trying to thrive in the online shopping era are seeking residential neighborhoods as part of major retail developments to help ensure the long-term viability of the project.
Malls are no longer retail only assets, they need diversification of use to survive and thrive. The more entertainment, restaurants, and community areas, the better. With 40 percent of top malls adding residential space and 33 percent building hotels, the “live, work, play” strategy is a must for future retail success. Mixed-use supports a repositioning of an old mall and helps ensure a vibrant new community venue for the future.
Massachusetts residents need only look at Legacy Place in Dedham, University Station in Westwood, MarketStreet in Lynnfield, and the South Share Plaza in Braintree to see what it takes to succeed in today’s climate. Hanover Crossing must gain the residential component as well as the retail revitalization to attract high-caliber tenants to compete with these centers.
On the residential side, units like the 297 proposed for Hanover Crossing also represent a chance for Millennials looking for their first place to live on their own, as well as empty-nesters hoping to downsize from a single-family home but still stay in the community they love. By combining residences with a retail center that has restaurants and other amenities, it’s a win-win for everyone.