Shopping Center Business

MAY 2017

Shopping Center Business is the leading monthly business magazine for the retail real estate industry.

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LANDSCAPING 318 • SHOPPING CENTER BUSINESS • May 2017 R etail centers have always focused on delivering a variety of offerings that attract and retain customers on site for as long as possible. Over the past few years, food has emerged as a pri- mary consumer attraction. Today's con- sumers seek out centers that offer unique dining amenities, as well as environments in which they can eat and socialize with friends and family. Beyond the need to di- versify the tenant mix with unique food offerings, retail owners must now consid- er innovative ways to drive traffic both to their restaurant tenants and to environ- ments that encourage consumers to linger throughout the property. The question is, how can retail owners create spaces that will compel people to walk into a restau- rant and/or stay on site? The answer lies in landscape design. Creating innovative landscaping that en- courages a visual connection with restau- rants and provides ample opportunities for socialization will not only drive foot traffic, but also keep more customers at a property for longer periods of time. Shop- ping center landscape design plays an im- portant role in establishing and enhancing the ambiance of a retail property. It can build a sense of community, encourage socialization, and provide an attractive environment that invites customers into a restaurant or retail store. And in today's experience-driven retail environment, de- signing invigorating gathering places with robust landscaping can positively trans- form a retail visit. LANDSCAPING THAT DRAWS SHOPPERS TO RESTAURANTS By providing an attractive environment surrounding sought-after food amenities, owners can entice shoppers into restau- rants, which in turn drives revenue for the overall center. Layout of public spaces around a central area where restaurants and shops coexist, and adjacent to a prop- erty's ample walkways (6 feet and wider), should be carefully planned and accentu- ated with attractive plant materials and outdoor rooms. Gathering spaces outside or along the edges will encourage a visu- al connection with the restaurant areas, driving foot traffic directly to your food tenants. The juxtaposition of exterior patio ar- eas with landscaped walkways fuels curi- Follow The Food How landscape design can drive foot traffic to restaurant tenants at retail centers. Julie Brinkerhoff Jacobs Landscaping can highlight pathways, create ambiance and instill a visual connection with shoppers. Pictured is Pacific City in Huntington Beach, California. Courtesy of Eric Figge

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