The Impact of Office Worker Spending on Retail

Written by  //  June 19, 2012  //  Posts  //  No comments

According to the latest ICSC study on office worker spending, the average employee spends $129 per week on retail related products and services. The study’s results yet again illustrate that eating out is actually only a small fraction of total office worker spending. The study also demonstrates that office developments generate significant demand for new retail space. Using ICSC’s figures, I did a quick back-of-the-envelope calculation which shows that for every 100 sq. ft. of office space, another +/-9 sq. ft. of retail could be supported.  Of course this isn’t to say that developers can simply apply this ratio in new office developments; a portion of this spending will inevitably leak to retail nearby or on the commute home. It does appear, however, that the majority of office developments in the US under appreciate the retail opportunity created by employees. 61.9% of respondents indicated the retail offering adjacent to their office was limited, and only 13.5% of workers appeared to be located in a ‘mixed-use’ environment.

Office-Worker Retail Spending in a Digital Age_ICSC



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Reurbanist is a multi-disciplinary firm that blends land use economics with urban planning and economic development. At its core, Reurbanist believes that great urban places that are compelling and vibrant must find success at both a fiscal and social level. Stronger cities and urban destinations translate into improved job growth, municipal tax revenue, and a higher quality of life for residents.

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