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Posted at 11:59 AM, Jan 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-09 19:26:15-05
One mall in the Milwaukee area could soon be seeing growth even while some retailers are struggling.
Brookfield Square's latest expansion is moving forward with plans to build new restaurants and shops, but nationwide, a research company says shoppers are choosing the convenience of swiping, tapping and clicking over a trip to the mall.
Online shopping surged strongly during the holiday season. Reports show retailers pulled in nearly $92 billion in online sales, an 11 percent increase from last year.
"I prefer online shopping because of the convenience. Its easier to shop around online and look for deals. It's shipped to your home and you don't have to deal with the Wisconsin cold," said Katie Berkey. An online shopper.
RetailNext says nationwide mall traffic sank nearly 13 percent in November and December, but that's not stopping Brookfield Square from talking expansion.
A proposal has been filed with the city by a Tennessee company, CBL & Associates Properties Inc. Tonight, a planning commission is reviewing the expansion.
If approved, Brookfield's expansion would include restaurants and shops plus a three-level parking garage.
But, the internet is fast becoming the destination of choice for shoppers, putting pressure on traditional stores.
Right now, some are struggling to keep up.
Women's apparel chain, The Limited, just announced its shutting down all 250 of its stores across the United States, including the store located at Brookfield Square.
Kmart is also closing more stores in the state and so is Macy's.
The closings are another sign of how dramatically the nation's retail landscape is changing.
"Convenience is taking over. Everything is moving toward technology," said Berkey.
No tenants have been named yet if the Brookfield expansion is approved.
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