Strip Malls - Bryn Mawr College

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Strip Malls
Hadass Blank, Sarah Spiegel,
Ptalia Greenwald & Amina Omar
History
First strip mall in 1896 in Baltimore, MD
 Designed to accommodate the car-driving
family
 Notion of one stop shopping
 Became widespread after the 1960’s in
suburban America

Design
A chain of connected stores
 In front parking
 Sidewalks connecting all store fronts
 Large display windows
 Developed around thoroughfares and
highways (access by cars)

Sizes and Styles
Smaller sizes: more common, often
located at the intersections of major
streets and smaller residential areas
 Found in nearly every city or town in
America
 Service oriented- grocery stores, dry
cleaner, video rental, small restaurant

Size and Style 2
Large: box retailers (ie Target or Wal-mart)
as anchors
 Sometimes referred to as power centersattract and cater residents in entire
population area
 Example: Plymouth Meeting

Plymouth Meeting
Plymouth Meeting was
developed within the last
few years
Stores serve everyday
needs
Such as Target, Bed, Bath,
and Beyond, Giant Food,
and Lowes Hardware
The stores are surrounded
by outside parking
Problems with Strip Malls

Parking lots are huge and unattractive

Further increases suburban sprawl

NOT Pedestrian friendly

Failing strip malls are misusing convenient
spaces
Solutions

Redevelopment
of failing strip
malls into mixed
use ‘town
centers’ or
apartments
Problems with the Solutions



Zoning laws can get very complicated –
where developers are only allowed to build
certain things in a specified area
Money – it will take a lot to change a dead
strip mall into a vibrant, busy town center
People prefer larger stores as a opposed to
smaller stores where they need to shop more
often
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