The search "retail" yielded
163 articles

Road trips on I-70: looking for quirky Americana? Any red dot on the map will do.

As someone who enjoys long road trips (perfectly fine if they’re solitary), I can never get enough of the small, often amusing telltale indicators of the cultural composition that distinguishes a place.  The visual shibboleths, if you will.  Venturing across Interstate 70, one of the oldest, longest, and most heavily traveled segments of the original

Crested Butte main street: a shopper’s oasis amidst the lingering retail drought.

More times than I can count, I’ve explored the country’s mismatch between the supply of retail-oriented real estate and the broader public’s demand.  We just have too many shopping centers.  And it’s always been that way.  Even in the best of times—the peak of the suburban mall during the 1970s and 80s—our historic downtown storefronts

Flag elements meet fashion: a swimsuit that suggests pernicious patriotism?

Strangely enough, this isn’t the first time I’ve covered flags and swimwear.  It’s not even the second time.  Judging from the tallies of the two topics, the count on flags vastly exceeds those of swimwear.  I do love me some flags.  As an (extremely) amateur vexillologist, I enjoy not just their origins in heraldry but

A strip mall can house a tapestry of tenants. Including once-mighty churches.

About eighteen months ago I explored an isolated example of a trend that has become increasingly common: the vacating of old church buildings by their original founding congregations.  In some cases, the old church benefits from monumental architecture, making it suitable for adaptive reuse, particularly as an events planning or catering facility that can capitalize

The skeletons of West Virginia’s film industry finally come out of the storefront.

The streetscape of downtown Martinsburg, the largest municipality (population 17,500) in West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle, doesn’t exactly boast an occupancy level one would rate as thriving.  But it’s hardly plagued by persistent plywood in the windows of the commercial buildings, and the majority of them look like they benefit from regular maintenance and upkeep. I

Bars on the windows in comfy little Malvern, you say? Have we come this far?

In these economically fraught times, it’s not always easy to find an urbanized restaurant/retail district where one can comfortably kick back a burger and a brew and feel safe, either from crime, civil unrest, or inconsistent enforcement of COVID precautions (depending on what you perceive is the greatest threat).  In 2021, the suburbs of large