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Destination spots can you force the market?

Legends at Village West
Legends at Village West

Joyce Smith of the Kansas City Star wrote an article titled: “The Legends shopping area to revamp into an outlet destination”

Apparently after only four years, The Legends at Village West is repositioning itself with more outlet stores to supplement the full price retail stores. A good idea? Well, many people have voice their opinion on this matter and so far it has been mixed.

Not being a big fan of places like The Legends at Village West; however, I know business and what they are doing borders on insanity. Historically, outlet stores and malls do well for a short time and once the newest wears off they begin to fail. The question now becomes if these outlet stores fail, do they take The Legends at Village West with them?

Hard to say at this point; however, the history of event driven market places are not very good in Kansas City or else where. Take for example the Truman Sports Complex that opened in the early 70’s. Kansas City tried to make this a destination spot and to date there are virtually the same number of hotels and restaurants their today as there was 30 years ago.

Worlds and Oceans of Fun is a destination spot opened 30 years ago and for the most part, until recently, the surrounding areas remained undeveloped. Only three hotels and two restaurants severed the area. This is because; they are a destination spot and keep most of their patrons happy with the amenities in the part. This will also is the case with Schlitterbahn that opened up last year and the new Casino that is being built near the Legends at Village West.

Another recent example is the Sprint Center and the Power and Light district in downtown Kansas City; they to had hopes of beginning a destination spot. However, most business owners struggle to make it during the times they are opened during non-events.

Forced development to supplement events, only work if the market demands it to work and so far the market has not. Therefore, retailers like The Legends at Village West need to relay on much of the local economy to succeed.

Western Wyandotte County has about 1/4 of the 154,287 populations and has a median income of $39,208. That pail in comparison to its neighbor just to the south; Johnson County has four times the population and twice the median household income. Therefore, it is hard to for department and retail stores like JC Penney, Target, Best Buy, Nebraska Furniture Mart and retail like Old Navy and T.J. Max to survive on the local economy.

The question now becomes can The Legends at Village West create a successful business strategy that will allow them to survive. Historically, the answer is no and the results will be that the market will correct itself as it always do. A prime example is the Bannister mall area.

Once the traffic re-routed itself and the expansion of the suburbs and retail giants like Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, and Price Choppers; there were no need for consumers to stop by the mall. They shopped where they lived and Bannister mall needed to relay on the local economy and that was not enough to keep the mall open.

Will the same happen to The Legends at Village West? Only time will tell what the market will decide.

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  • Sarah 5 years ago

    I'm not sure about outlet malls failing, but if you have ever been to Jcpenney Outlet store in Overland Park, that thing has been successfully going for years, no matter what time I drive by there the parking lot is crowded. I'm not opposed to outlet stores, my only problem with some like Jcpenney outlet alot of the items are Less Than perfect so why would I buy LTP clothing when I can buy new for the same price on clearance at regular stores. Now I have been to the Lane Bryant outlet at Legends and all of their stuff looks like its in excellent condition. So if the outlet stores they put in the Legends have products that are in excellent condition I say bring them. They have an outlet mall down in Sunrise, Fl that has been successful it is the sixth largest mall in the U.S. and the second largest in Florida, so yeah outlet malls can be successful if done right.

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