Retail supply and demand

There is enough demand within a three-mile radius of the train station for existing retail and planned retail, according to the Rahway Survey. Community Insights, which was commissioned by the Rahway Center Partnership, examined 63 separate categories of retail for the survey.

The report found sustainable demand for the following retail categories:

  • Apparel and accessories, including children’s clothing, clothing accessories, footwear and jewelry;
  • Entertainment, especially live theater and night clubs;
  • Eating and drinking places
  • Food and beverages; and,
  • Specialty retail, such as arts and crafts, gifts, office supplies, newsstands, and toys, games and hobbies.

There is an oversupply of furniture and grocery stores in the ZIP code area, but especially within the primary trade area (3-mile radius). [To avoid the risk of boring you here, I placed definitions and statistics of the “trade areas” at the end of this post; it’ll probably be handy for several future posts about survey results.]

There also is excess demand for women’s clothing, shoes, jewelry, musical instruments, florists, office supplies and recorded music, among others. However, the figures don’t reflect the presence of Woodbridge Center, which is only a half-mile outside the 3-mile radius. Despite $14 million in unmet demand for clothing stores — particularly women’s clothing and clothing accessories — the report suggests any new stores should be the type that do not directly compete against those present in the mall.

Consumers also expressed a preference for a variety of retail stores, including a grocery store, bakery, clothing stores, a bookstore, cards and gifts, and home decor.

The survey concluded that the primary trade area is a 3-mile radius from the train station that includes 135,000 people in 49,000 households and an average household income of $75,000. Consumer demand within that area exceeds $2.2 billion annually.

In the spirit of Friday’s The Taste event, tomorrow’s post will deal with the demand specifically for restaurants (you won’t want to miss it). See you there!

Previous Rahway Survey posts:
Restaurants would draw us downtown (among other things)
Rahway Survey results are in

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The Rahway Survey examined consumers and supply and demand for the ZIP code 07065, along with a primary trade area (3-mile radius around the train station) and a secondary trade area (5-mile radius).

About 69 percent of consumers in Rahway originate from the 07065 ZIP code area, which contains about 10,000 people who spend $456 million annually on retail goods and services. More than 75 percent of all shoppers originate within the primary trade area, which is home to 75,000 consumers, and 83 percent from the secondary trade area, which has more than 363,000 consumers.