The Regional Spotlight – Lancaster
Lancaster’s retail market is preparing for significant changes as big competitors begin moving into one of the most developed local shopping areas. Many well-known and highly anticipated businesses such as Wegman’s, Whole Foods, Target, and more to come, are igniting a fury of retail development near Route 30 and the popular Park City Mall.
This is exciting news for consumers but how will this affect existing property owners and influence economic development in Lancaster for 2017?
Ted Pfeifer, Landmark’s Vice President of Retail, warns Lancaster investors and property owners, “Change is coming. In fact, it’s already here. Retail elements in Lancaster are going to radically change over the next couple years.”
With more local grocery competition, an increase in online retail purchases across all lines of retail, and what seems to be an upcoming generational shift in consumers, tenants and property owners face a variety of challenges in keeping their businesses thriving.
“Development like this in Lancaster can trigger a refining process that can be dangerous to smaller business owners and outdated shopping centers if they cannot adapt to compete with the new retail landscape,” says Pfeifer.
It would be easy for any company and property owner in a highly competitive area to get caught on the losing side of this refining process, but there are things that can be done to help owners adapt to a changing market. Pfeifer suggests that landlords need to be continually evaluating their tenants, staying aware of what companies may not survive intense competition. They should be planning 2-3 years in advance, considering how than can reposition their properties in a changing market.
“New retail chain buildings, shopping centers and complexes are not built often which makes the new developments along Route 30 special,” say Pfeifer, “Usually, businesses are just repositioning. That’s what existing property owners need to do if they are going to stand up to new competition. Tear out unused areas, establish new retail in place of old units, maintain a great visual appearance, learn about the interests of the upcoming generation of consumers. Adapt. Adapt. Adapt.”
And that time is not coming; it is most assuredly here!
Ted Pfeifer specializes in and enjoys working with landlords to help re-tenant buildings, assisting in the re- design of centers, with the goal of getting the rent amount they need, and developing creative solutions for keeping up with competition. Ted is always available to talk and help in designing an effective strategy for your business needs.