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Exodus of big-box stores leaves gaping holes in Las Vegas retail scene

Exodus of big-box stores leaves gaping holes in Las Vegas retail scene

Although there are plenty of retail shopping centers that fill Southern Nevada, the East and West of the Las Vegas strip is empty. Buildings are boarded up and yards are fenced in.

A few miles east of the Strip, an empty supermarket building has plenty of grave markers.

The property is fenced-off, and signs at the entrance declare the former Food 4 Less outlet “permanently closed.” Even the grocer’s signage along the street is blacked-out.

West of the Strip, an abandoned Circuit City still announces a “Store Closing Sale” more than eight years after the electronics chain went bankrupt. And in Henderson, lenders foreclosed a few months ago on a mostly empty shopping center, a few years after its anchor, an Albertsons grocery, locked its doors.

Plenty of shopping centers in Southern Nevada are filled with retailers and shoppers. But not every plaza is so lucky. Large, empty stores have left gaping holes in some retail centers around the valley.

Bankruptcies, heightened competition and other factors have made it more difficult to keep these boxes filled. And when a plaza loses a supermarket or other store that serves the masses, smaller shops there can suffer because of the drop in foot traffic.

More big-boxes were empty during the recession than today, real estate pros say, and supersized stores still are getting built. But vacancies persist. read more… reviewjournal.com

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