Retail solution cannot succeed

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By Richard Hannemann

From the Monitor June 13:  Kevin Holsapple, “... Trinity (Place) is to anchor a share of the shopper traffic in our community that currently flees to other communities.  Increased shopper traffic in the downtown can provide increased opportunity for other businesses.”  

Mr. Holsapple’s comment is certainly good advice for Winrock Shopping Center.  But Los Alamos is not a shopping center competing with other shopping centers within the same market for the same consumers, sales and dollars.  Los Alamos is dependent principally on its resident market — long distance commuters don’t purchase enough to offset the off-Hill shopping by Los Alamos residents and it is highly unlikely that people living outside of the county will come to Los Alamos solely for the purpose of shopping. Increased traffic, then, can only come from local shoppers and so we must be very clear as to the causes of consumer flight.

1) People shop elsewhere just as part of going elsewhere. Living in Los Alamos can make people feel cut off from the rest of the world.

2) Los Alamos has one grocery store. That makes residents a “captured market” and people resent feeling like they are prisoners.

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