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How Apartment Communities Are Integrating Retail Spaces

Integrating Retail Spaces

Digested from “How Multifamily is Blending Retail with Residential” in Property Management Insider (6/14/2016) by Blackwell, Tim

As renting continues to become a popular choice for many Americans, apartment communities are adding retail and commercial properties to their residential developments. But instead of building up, architects are building out — horizontally. This design creates a more walkable community by linking residences with shopping centers. 

“It’s been quite a challenge in the marketplace in the last 10 years to get retail to fit and work and not have empty storefronts at any one time,” says BGO Architects partner Erik O. Earnshaw. “The new trend is going to a horizontal mixed-use product. It’s taking retail, restaurants and living and stacking them in a horizontal application.”

BGO Architects is also designing large outdoor areas — parks, river walks and playgrounds — to complement its new mixed-use developments. The apartments, retail and outdoor spaces will be connected by a walkway system.

“The interconnection and outdoor activity is what all residents are looking for and how the community ties into a greater-sized atmosphere,” Earnshaw says.

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