Carlisle Urban Redevelopment Plan-The Economy and Real Estate Market Session Notes

IMG_1271Bob Gibbs of Gibbs Planning Groupgave a comprehensive presentation about the market in Carlisle for new retail, office and residential development.  They are supposed to be posting their powerpoint at some point so once that is available it will be posted here as well.  For now, here are the notes taken from the presentation.  It was probably the most informative session of the week because it gave incredible detail about real estate and retail potential all based on actual data collected about Carlisle and general best current practices when adding large scale retail into urban areas.

Plan should be to draw people downtown from the outside
Strong need for residential especially ’empty nesters’ and young professionals
Most businesses can afford/expect 8-10% of their income to go to rent
20% for rent too high and stores usually go under
Need to ensure businesses going into new development or open downtown spots are paying right price for their business

When adding new development, put all the money into store front, not the area right outside.  Keep it clean and simple but the attraction is the business itself.
Don’t need a lot of ornamentation

Different metrics for getting people into store
8 second rule
It takes 8 seconds to pass store front
4 seconds to get to door
1.5 seconds to see something in window and actually go in
If shopper passes door, slim chance they will be turning around to go back inside

Stacked flats type housing recommended for new development.
Stacked flats type housing recommended for new development.

Most people say that they don’t like big box stores but almost everyone shops there
By creating some larger national retailers in urban center it gives a draw to outside shoppers by creating an anchor store.  If not correctly, it can then draw those shoppers to additional stores in downtown.
Should put in stores that are different from ones downtown so they are not in direct competition
Ensure that businesses going into new developments don’t cannibalize each other but directly competing with each other
Add new businesses slowly so it doesn’t oversaturate market right away
Chain stores want to come downtown but want to blend into architectural structure already in area.  Build new buildings that look old.  Smaller footprint than what you would see in strip malls
Recreate main street feel-Offices/residential above-Retail below
Worker Happiness=Customer Happiness
When you have some built in customers (residents/office works above) businesses thrive more
Office market growing here but not great yet
Issues with building this model is retailers sign leases 3 years in advance so it is much harder to get office/residents to sign to make it worthwhile for the developer
Developers dont’ want unused spaces

How people shop
Most people shop after 5pm
Problem:High/Hanover businesses close at 5 pm
Men don’t really shop
#1 activity for tourists is shopping
Even if they have same stores back home, they are more likely to buy on vacation
Like brands they know

Different possible designs
Different possible designs

Carlisle Market
Colonial looking buildings big draw for business – picturesque like out of a movie
Carlisle could be major tourist town
Road diet was good for town-added walkability
Could add 100-120 new residential spaces
100,000 sq ft of neighborhood growth
Public Market-30-50 vendors-could become the tourist attraction
This is a lot of leg work to accomplish though
Demand for stacked flats type housing
No garage doors to street
Edgy is good, people won’t move here if it looks identical to the suburbs where they already live

Q & A Session
North Hanover is emerging district
Make retailers feel like they are pioneers

Senior housing also in need
We shouldn’t have more than 30% of redevelopment go to national chains

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