All over the US old malls are being abandoned and demolished when showing signs of decay. The main reason for this abandonment is, you may have guessed it already, internet sales. Malls are becoming increasingly obsolete, due to an inability to compete with online retailers and I would also add, the inability to innovate and reinvent themselves.
Rick Caruso, CEO of Caruso Affiliated, one of the largest real-estate companies, rightly said: “Within ten to fifteen years, the typical US mall, unless it’s completely reinvented, will be an historical anachronism – a sixty year aberration that no longer meets the public’s needs, the retailers’ needs or the community’s needs.”
Who would have thought, back in the 80’s, the golden era of shopping malls, that things would change so much and get to this point? No one, I would say. The mall was central in America’s daily life and culture, and the way they were glorified in many film classics, this idea of the mall contrasts with today’s reality of crumbling grey corridors and dry fountains.
The trend seems to be increasing rapidly in the US, however in Europe and Asia things don’t seem so bad. At least not for the large shopping centers. Yet. If anything, the example of what is going on in America should urge mall businesses in Europe and Asia to be on the lookout for ways of improving their service, innovating when necessary. Consumers are constantly looking for different things these days and any business who doesn’t keep up is doomed to become like a sad, grey abandoned mall, waiting to be demolished.