It Starts with a Square

We Want Retail… But What Do They Want

BY Chelsey Handley

One of the exciting components of my job as the Director of Economic Development for the Town of Collierville is hearing citizens’ wants and needs when it comes to commercial development, especially retail and restaurant expansions and relocations. But what do these desired restaurants and retailers require, and how well does our community strategically match their requirements? Let me shine some light on this part of the economic development journey.

We have been talking with many of the specialty grocers for years about the strengths of our community and what it would look like for them to do business in our Town. We have had numerous discussions with Trader Joe’s, Sprouts, Earth Fare, Lucky’s, Natural Grocers, and Fresh Market, to name a few. Some are not expanding now, so we plant seeds, while positioning ourselves as an option for those who are. For example, Trader Joe’s shared they like “traffic jams,” and want to be in what they call the “economic epicenter of a community.” I was not surprised when they chose their Germantown location, based on what they had shared. Full service breakfast, brunch, and lunch restaurant, First Watch, requires a location with a minimum of 30,000 vehicles per day on the ‘going to work’ side of the street, in an area with a strong daytime population, an elevated corporate presence near hospitals and universities, and located on an end­cap in a vibrant center with high-performing co-tenants. Where should we put them? In the meantime, here comes Staks! Pancake Kitchen. Connors Steakhouse, an upscale American casual dining restaurant, that does $6,500,000 in annual sales per store, desires a population of 250,000 within a 5-mile-radius in a community that will support a strategy of 30% of sales coming from lunch volume. Chicken Salad Chick requires at least 30,000 vehicles per day in a free standing, multi-tenant outparcel near offices, hospitals, universities, and other strong lunch and dinner high traffic generators. Freddy’s wants to be near a Chick-Fil-A, Taziki’s near a grocery anchor, and Mugshots pursues locations at “Main & Main.” 

We will continue to promote our demographics, to include population density, education levels, affluence, as well as our corporate partner assets and desirable real estate availability, all with the strategy of bringing vibrant and attractive new businesses to Town. #ColliervilleStrong 

John D. Duncan

Director of Economic Development

500 Poplar View Parkway

Collierville, TN 38017

901-457-2200 General

901-457-2213 Direct

901-457-9325 Cell

September/October 2021 Tour Collierville Magazine