Monday, September 16, 2013 at 6:57 PM
Two Northeast Ohio malls -- each a hallmark of retail trade in their communities -- are being sold. Great Northern Mall in North Olmstead and Belden Village Mall in Stark County are part of a $1.6 billion deal between the Westfield group and Starwood Capital Group. For Ohio Public Radio, WKSU’s M.L. Schultze spoke with a retail analyst who says there are signs retail is finally recovering from the recession -- even as it faces a new challenge from e-commerce.
Belden Village Mall opened off of Interstate 77 in northern Stark County in 1970. It was part of a movement that helped spell the end of retail in downtown Canton and similar cities.
But Belden Village and other enclosed malls have been struggling a themselves, through the shift of retail to strip malls, through the recession and now through on-line shopping.
Chris Christopher analyzes the retail sector for IHS Global. The firm doesn’t comment on company particulars. But overall, Christopher says, retail is seeing a recovery marked in part by new construction.
He says that on-line sales now account for better than 5 percent of all retail sales, but they’re still in a relatively nascent stage. He says retailers are still trying to figure out how traditional and online shopping can coexist.
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