Chicago Retail Market Report
Floor Plan Needs Alter Retail Landscape, While Big-Box
Challenges Weigh on Multi-Tenant Performance
Loop-adjacent markets benefit from shift in retailer preferences. In an attempt to capture more foot traffic, area retailers are adapting to omni-channel business models, vacating larger stores in favor of smaller floor plans in affluent suburban neighborhoods. Abercrombie & Fitch and Bloomingdale’s are recent brands to adapt this model locally, introducing boutique-sized stores in Loop-adjacent neighborhoods. While this trend will adversely impact fundamentals in areas of store closings, the shift will aid retail performance in submarkets like Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, Logan Square and the Gold Coast. Each entered the second quarter with vacancy rates well below their pre-pandemic benchmarks, and helped metrowide absorption exceed completions for the third consecutive year in 2023.