Katie Thisdell reports on news from Stafford County. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 540/735-1975.
Stafford studies retail
Stafford County is focusing on developing and maintaining a “vital and sustainable retail base.” Supervisors last fall said that the Economic Development program was a top priority in the county.
Recently, the Riddle Company was hired to do a market assessment and develop a strategy, the first step of a long-term retail attraction initiative, according to the draft report presented to the Community & Economic Development Committee last week.
There is much good news in the county that would encourage more diverse and high end retail. Here are some of the numbers:
- Average household income: $96,975
- Residential growth rate (2000-10): 39.5 percent
- Median age of residents: 34.6
- Percent of family households: 79.8 percent
- Households with kids under 18: 46.2 percent
- Average family size: 3.34
- Homeownership: 79.4 percent
- Households with income over $100,000: 42 percent
- Population in the workforce: 93.2 percent
- Residents in white collar jobs: 67.1 percent
- Residents with at least a BA: 35.4 percent
However, there are several market constraints that may deter retail from coming to the county:
- Lack of density
- Limited road network
- Available product
- Market awareness
The Riddle Company gave its top three recommendations on how the county can improve its profile in the retail industry:
- Join ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers), and attend local meetings
- Be proactive about retail marketing and recruitment: develop a retail mailing list, contact target retailers
- Focus on identifying sites and opportunities for assemblage to create parcels suitably sized for retail development
Check back soon for a more in-depth story about these findings, here and in the paper.