typically range in size from 300,000 square feet (sq. ft.) to 1.5 million sq. ft., and require a supporting
population of 60,000 to 400,000. Regional shopping centers generally draw shoppers from a 6- to 10-
mile radius or driving distances of 20-40 minutes. Accordingly, any shopping center in excess of 300,000
sq.ft. should be considered regional.
In contrast, a “neighborhood” shopping center consists of approximately 20,000 to 100,000 sq.
ft. of retail space, and requires a minimum population of 2,500-40,000 people. Similarly, “community”
shopping centers are in the 100,000 to 300,000 sq. ft. range, require a minimum population of 40,000-
150,000 people, and involve a “radius draw” in the range of 3 to 6 miles. (A report explaining these
distinctions in further detail is found at Tab 5.).
National retailers publish site selection criteria for their stores mandating certain features.
Accordingly, national retailers—not just developers—have site selection criteria that require a regional
customer base. A 2004 MIT study published the site selection criteria for a number of national retailers.
The size of individual “wholesale” stores (e.g., B.J.’s Wholesale/Costco) is in the 100,000-175,000 sq. ft.
range and requires a minimum population of 75,000. Large-format retailers (e.g., Target and Wal-Mart)
feature prototype stores in the 90,000-140,000 sq. ft. range that require a minimum population of
100,000-250,000 people from a 5-mile radius. These 100,000 sq. ft. “box” stores require a site location
next to a “major arterial” road that has the capacity to handle large shopper traffic volume (Tab 6).
American Marketing Association, The Urban Land Institute, and the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).
Page | 8