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HOW WILL THE RETAIL LANDSCAPE CHANGE IN 2022?

Written by: Katie Doellman

Katie Doellman is the Director of Leasing for RPT Leasing. Keep reading to get Katie’s take on how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the retail sector and what she expects moving forward.


What challenges do you expect in the retail leasing environment in 2022, and how do you plan to overcome them?

Both retailers and landlords continue to face supply chain concerns. This is leading to longer lead times with both LL work and retailer buildouts, thus resulting in delayed deliveries, openings, and RCDs. It will be important for both sides to effectively manage lease negotiations and take appropriate risks in ordering materials in advance to meet relevant dates.


How is retail changing on a national/institutional level?

Data is being leveraged more and more by retailers to inform expansion and optimization strategies. Decisions once informed by walking a shopping center to view traffic patterns and shopper demographics are now also informed by a wealth of cell phone data.


What retail sectors/tenants are performing the best currently?

Coming out of the pandemic, we saw essential businesses fare very well. Grocery, medical, hardware & home improvement. Furniture stores continue to do well, and we’re starting to see a resurgence in some boutique fitness franchises, with growing confidence in the vaccine.


Are any tenants proving more opportunistic than others? Has this caused any new trends to arise?

Several urgent care brands have harnessed their momentum from 2021 to ramp up expansion plans, thus continuing the trend of LL’s focusing on adding medical or other essential businesses to their shopping center merchandising plans.


What is RPT’s main focus/objective in 2022?

RPT’s focus in 2022 is expansion. We announced $791M of investment activity in 2021, and there is more to come.


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