Nine States, Wealth of Retail

Not all of the nine states defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as making up the Northeast—Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont—are as evidently opportunity-rich as the big retail states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. But even the smaller states have their big moments.

In Vermont, for instance, while there are no lifestyle centers (see story on page 138), there are vibrant downtown areas, albeit mostly small. And there are population pockets that present their own retail draws for the surrounding communities. Then there’s Rhode Island, which, despite its small stature, seems to incite big interest from the nation’s big-box retailers.

In the uber-historic states of Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire (see story on page 134), developers are also finding opportunity. Lifestyle centers abound, in spite of frigid winter temps, and developments of all kinds—particularly those that are tenant-driven—are finding success.

No surprise that the Northeastern big boys—Pennsylvania and New York—are hosting significant retail development and redevelopment activities. Pennsylvania (see story on page 126) tells an especially interesting retail story because, in essence, it is two states in one. The Philadelphia part of the state—the East—is more in character with its Northeastern surrounds. But the western half? Decidedly Midwestern, and its retail is often reflective of that less-cosmopolitan personality.

There are numerous ways to slice and dice when you’re dividing a Northeastern pie into nine pieces. In this special real estate supplement to Chain Store Age— the Northeastern Market Profile—we have divvied up the feature coverage into three groups of three states, and provided you with a market capsule on each state. And, as is customary in these regular real estate supplements, we feature a plethora of project profiles (starting on page 142) that serve to sum up development successes throughout the Northeastern corridor.