The retail industry is changing, or depending upon your current situation, the retail industry has already changed. The days of throwing up a center on every open suburban vacant parcel are long gone and likely not to return anytime soon. Just knowing how to build a retail center is no longer enough. What can you do to make a difference, promote responsible development and responsible consumer behavior? Close your eyes and imagine a zero emission community where gasoline and diesel powered vehicles share the road with pure electric vehicles.
How can your center differentiate itself from the pack, get loads of free press and be environmentally responsible at the same time? Look into the future when electric vehicles are the norm and not the exception. Some say that day is not so far off. BMW intends to launch its Megacity Vehicle by 2013; Nissan intends to launch the Leaf late this year. Electric vehicles will stop where they can plug in and recharge. A center which offers charging stations will attract shoppers; usually educated high earning shoppers which many retailers are trying to attract into their stores. Now do you get it?
Charging stations = shoppers = quality retail tenants.
Contact your electric utility and state government to see if they will support your efforts through grants and low interest rate loans. Be creative and look for an opportunity to be a leader into the future.