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69 articles

Ridgecrest retail reticence: even remote communities are reeling from reduced relish.

Strategically located in the middle of sun-baked somewhere, the military city of Ridgecrest, California offers the accidental visitor a surprisingly populous alternative to the preceding and subsequent miles of Mojave desolation. By contrast, the deliberate visitor’s most likely destination is Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, a munitions and explosives testing range and research facility,

Metrics for mallwalkers.

The cultural standards for commerce continue to evolve across the nation, to the point that shopping is no longer a peripatetic pastime. It seems obvious by this point that malls are bearing the brunt of this cataclysm. People still shop, but they don’t go shopping. Sure, there are plenty of sterile strip malls or shopping

The Sandusky Mall’s precipitous fall.

While this article treads across some familiar territory—dead and dying malls—it arrives through a different lens: the eyes of a friend and fellow devotee of interesting landscapes. I blogged many years ago about Sandusky—specifically an unusual Value City Furniture in the heart of downtown—but I spent very little time in the area that one would

Small town retail: is the outlook any better than the cities?

I’ve spoken numerous times about the dire state of retail, and I’m hardly alone. National urban publications have covered it, obsessing in recent months how even the Borough of Manhattan, America’s most densely populated urban settlement, is witnessing increasingly yawning gaps between its occupied storefronts on formerly bustling streets. And it’s not like the island

Keeping the peace in Paulsboro.

While we’ve all seen “crime watch” or “neighborhood watch” placards upon entering a residential area, I couldn’t help but be a bit alarmed by the sign I saw as I swerved onto a local road in Paulsboro, New Jersey. Needless to say, it’s the upper of these two signs that merits consideration. Not only because

Sears and Whitehall Mall: the only show in town still can barely pitch a tent.

I can’t feign innocence anymore. It’s getting harder to resist the opportunity to kick a struggling business when it’s already down. And, since it’s one I’ve covered multiple times over the years, it’s safe to say it’s turned into a pathology. But I think we’re all in agreement at this point: Sears is a flailing,

Tri-State Mall: not yet dead, but gangrenous.

I’ve encountered some pretty bleak suburban shopping districts in my day, but Delaware’s Tri-State Mall, just a stone’s throw from the Pennsylvania state line in the Philadelphia suburbs, ranks near the top. Notice I said “near the top”. It’s not number one: I can’t quite place it at the same tier as the Bannister Mall

Metrics for mallwalkers.

The cultural standards for commerce continue to evolve across the nation, to the point that shopping is no longer a peripatetic pastime. It seems obvious by this point that malls are bearing the

The Sandusky Mall’s precipitous fall.

While this article treads across some familiar territory—dead and dying malls—it arrives through a different lens: the eyes of a friend and fellow devotee of interesting landscapes. I blogged many years ago about

Keeping the peace in Paulsboro.

While we’ve all seen “crime watch” or “neighborhood watch” placards upon entering a residential area, I couldn’t help but be a bit alarmed by the sign I saw as I swerved onto a

Tri-State Mall: not yet dead, but gangrenous.

I’ve encountered some pretty bleak suburban shopping districts in my day, but Delaware’s Tri-State Mall, just a stone’s throw from the Pennsylvania state line in the Philadelphia suburbs, ranks near the top. Notice