|Arizona Mills Mall (photo by Briana Tyson, April 2011)|
|Controversial hotel across the street from Arizona Mills Mall (photo by Briana Tyson, April 2011)|
|Cabaret across the street from Arizona Mills Mall (photo by Briana Tyson, April 2011)|
5000 South Arizona Mills Circle, Tempe, AZ 85283
The Arizona Mills Mall, located at the south-east intersection of Interstate-10 and Interestate-60, in Tempe, Arizona, is a self-proclaimed "super value-oriented mega-mall." The developer and former owners of the retail-outlet, Mills Corporation, chose the current site for a number of reasons. For one, the land is cheap, “typically 30 minutes or more from major urban centers, the land under them has little intrinsic value.” The outlet center’s site was strategically located also due to the number of vehicles passing by the interstates daily, giving the shopping center high visibility in a much trafficked area not far removed from the urban, population dense centers. Removed from the urban cores that typically bring on higher crime rates, lower income levels, and less dependable (overstretched, underfunded) infrastructure. Outlet stores have traditionally been located tens of miles away from retailers selling similar, typically more costly, goods. In order for the retailers to not directly compete with the manufacturer for sales, this non-binding agreement was typical of the industry. Mills Corporation was one of the first REIT (real estate investment trust) to challenge this common practice of clear distinction from retailer and manufacturer.
Retailers have increasingly been diversifying their marketing strategies finding more successful, profitable ways to operate. Arizona Mills has utilized what retailers refer to as the “Big Middle.” The “concept implies that retail institutions originate as innovators or low-price establishments…These retailers offer great value by providing innovative merchandise at reasonable prices” (Ganesh 371).
Developers were searching for an area in the east valley of the Phoenix metro area to place a shopping center. The final location was chosen to accommodate the varying players in the race, Chandler, Guadalupe, and Tempe, all of whom would receive proportional proceeds of the sales tax revenues generated. When Chandler became a major player in the retailer market, in comparison to Tempe, they were squeezed out of the proceeds in 2003.
The site was chosen due to its proximity to the unincorporated (poor, non-white) city of Guadalupe. Also taken into consideration is its proximity and availability to the concentrated minority populations of South Phoenix. The competing interests of the urban ghetto community members seeking and finding a comfortable environment for entertainment and socializing clashing with middle-class white “families” led to curfews targeting teenagers. The targets of the curfews are those who are not in the space to spend money, but are there to socialize, to spend their free time without having to spend significant amounts of money.
The outlet appeals to a consumer base referred to as outshoppers and crosshoppers. “Out-shopping occurs when consumers shop outside of the areas in which they live. Increased outshopping is prevalent among young cosmopolitan consumers with above average income levels, a particularly desirable target market. These shoppers, devoid of time, demonstrate a preference for combining recreation and entertainment with shopping, and hence are willing to travel greater distances to obtain these desired benefits. Crossshopping and out-shopping are byproducts of the growing similarity of retail formats and a one-stop shopping mentality” (Ganesh 371). This targeted market’s clash with the urban ghetto (young minority groups) inevitably led to the introduction of a curfew to make for a more consumer friendly environment.
- Briana Tyson, Lysandra Whitlow, and Brian Simpson
" Arizona Mills Had Swarmed With Teenagers." Arizona Republic [Phoenix] 08 Nov. 2006: 19. Print.
Armendariz, Yvette. " African-Artifacts Dealer Wins Lawsuit Against Arizona Mills." Arizona Republic [Phoenix] 25 Aug. 2005: B. 1. Print.
Beard, Betty. " Arizona Mills’ Teen Curfew Puts End to ‘Hanging Out’" Arizona Republic [Phoenix] 19 Oct. 2006: B.1. Print.
Beard, Betty. " With New Policy, Mall Touts Safety, Family, Atmosphere ." Arizona Republic [Phoenix] 03 Nov. 2006: D. 5. Print.
Ganesh, Jaishankar; Reynolds, Kristy E; Luckett, Michael G. “Retail patronage behavior and shopper typologies: a replication and extension using a multi-format, multi-method approach.” Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science: Online only May 2007.
Reinke, Martha. "Mall-war Site Targeted for Power Center." The Business Journal [Phoenix] 01 Nov. 1996. Print.