Decline in Retail Stores

I began to write about this issue last week on my personal blog, but technology took over. (Kind of like a character does when you’re writing. LOL) But walking at Ridgmar Mall Monday, working on getting my steps, the emptiness just overcame me. I had to share my thoughts.

So Ridgmar was the first mall in Fort Worth. After Bob finished law school, we moved from Austin to Fort Worth for his job. I had been living in San Antonio and was used to having malls and shopping that way, so it was a huge adjustment and then a cause for great celebration when Ridgmar opened several years after we arrived. It was a fancy with large columns and had all the big stores: Nieman Marcus, Dillard’s, and Sanger Harris (turned into Foley’s into Macy’s.). I have many fond memories of shopping at Ridmar with my mother and my daughters.

Monday, I found a sadly broken down elderly woman whose clothes didn’t fit as well as they once did. So many, many stores empty and dark. Dillard’s wasn’t even open. The second floor of this store has been turned into an outlet facility with clothes crammed in so tightly, you can hardly make out what is what. The Dillard’s lower floor is more like before but about half has been shut off. You can tell from the picture the abbreviated hours the store is open. ☹

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What first caught my attention was the Kay’s Jewelry store with nothing in it. It had stuff on Saturday when I walked. I did notice a couple of counters that looked a bit slim. But Monday, it was empty. The couple of workers were shutting it all down.IMG_2177

On the top floor is of what once was Macy’s. IMG_2180 It’s entirely closed. We now only have one Macy’s in Fort Worth at Hulen Mall. The top floor of that store has also been shrunk and turned into an outlet.

The Macy’s space at Ridgmar Mall  has been turned into a Storage Facility! Have you ever seen this done? At least it’s something in the space.

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What the Mall has done well to keep itself going is become super kid friendly. I didn’t get a picture of the Aquarium which is on the bottom floor and know from personal experience taking a granddaughter there is quite good

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We hear talk about the loss of manufacturing jobs and very little about the loss of retail jobs. And I think it’s the internet. We can buy any and everything on-line. We had a neighborhood coffee on Saturday, and I loved the coffee cups, which could be recycled, that the hostess used. I asked her where she bought them. Her response was Amazon.

Full disclosure here, but I’m sure you know, I sell my books on Amazon as well B & N, KOBO, and iTunes. So, I’m partly responsible for the demise of book-stores. (I don’t sell that many books, so I’m not responsible by myself, but still you get my point.)

What kinds of jobs are the folks who’ve held the retail jobs going to get?

So that’s what I’m worrying over these days. Thoughts? Love to hear from you.

(The flowers at the top I did purchase at a regular store. :))

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