Large retail tenants are leaving their large, warehouse sized properties because of the rise in ecommerce such as Amazon. This leaves large buildings in “prime” locations, sometimes up to 100,000 square feet, empty and without a use.
There is a great demand to find a use for these empty warehouse type buildings, which are usually already in a great location.
This is where community marketplaces make sense. In Castro Valley, one very successful redevelopment is the Lake Chabot Public Market. It used to be a large and empty retail building. It is now a market with many stores and a thriving center in Castro Valley. Tenants include a poke restaurant, Korean restaurant, and boba shop.
Another great redevelopment of this kind is happening in downtown Castro Valley, with the Castro Valley Marketplace. Over the past year, I have met with the developer of the project, as we share our passion for this type of redevelopment.
“This specialty lifestyle marketplace will feature a butchery, bakery & patisserie, natural grocery store, full-service restaurant, wine bar, cooking school, an apothecary, and event space! Comprised of three levels, the basement, ground floor and mezzanine, retail and restaurant space is now available for the Fall 2019 opening,” the marketplace website says. This type of redevelopment helps the lives of people in Castro Valley.
Castro Valley Marketplace will definitely make people’s lives better in Castro Valley. It should be a really fun place for people to hang out, experience cooking classes, or go grocery shopping.
People interact like how they did thousands of years ago, with trading zones like these originating in 3,000 BCE. Middle Eastern bazaars were similar with long rows of merchants on both sides.
One of the great things about this redevelopment is the cost of the lease is split with all of the tenants. If only one tenant provides income, then there is less assurance.
If the marketplace is failing, adding an anchor tenant for reduced rent assures higher traffic to the marketplace, increasing business for the other tenants. This cannot be done with a single tenant.
Community marketplaces are a fun, exciting way of converting large, abandoned retail buildings into beautiful places where experiences improve the lives of people every day.