Data collection is essential for retail recovery INSIDE A review of retail financing and a forecast for the year to come Market outlook When building out a new restaurant space, it’s important to hire a general contractor early Construction insights PAGE 18 Colorado’s Front Range eateries take it to the streets even as the weather cools Restaurant trends PAGE 12 November 2021 PAGE 10 W hile the takeaways from our pandemic experience con- tinue to evolve, two key ele- ments have proved invalu- able to retail real estate dur- ing the initial phases of recovery: data and community engagement. n Data. As the retail real estate industry continues to recover from the height of COVID-19 closure mandates and occupancy restrictions, property owners who historically have invested in data are reaping the rewards. From foot traffic analysis to cus- tomer sentiment feedback, properties that benefit from real-time, actionable data via a vetted tech stack are able to adjust everything from operational efficiencies to mar- keting programs to create successful environments. For example: 4.8%. That’s how much foot traffic at NewMark Merrill Mountain States’ Colorado retail portfolio is upWeek 39, compared with Week 39 in pre-pandemic 2019. Being able to show existing tenants how a center’s foot traffic is performing compared with pre-COVID-19 time periods is invaluable. Sometimes a tenant’s sales don’t always reflect this foot traffic increase, and being able to walk through this type of data with businesses often leads them to adjust marketing programs and customer service to better capture returning customers. Illustrating for a potential new ten- ant how foot traffic is rebounding at our center versus a competitive cen- ter in the market often helps tip the scales in favor of a center that outpac- es recovery in its competitive set. From an operational perspective, detailed foot traffic data assists own- ers and managers in maximizing budget efficiency by utilizing detailed day/time traffic analysis to create and adjust property staff schedules. With labor shortages and supply chain issues challenging business owners of all types throughout the country, keeping a close eye on cus- tomer sentiment data also arms prop- erty owners with actionable feedback Please see Owner Insights, Page 23 Danaria McCoy, CRRP Vice president of operations and marketing, NewMark Merrill Mountain States In 2021, NewMark Merrill Mountain States’ shopping centers have seen a resurgence of in-person events, with some of the largest historic attendance on record for key events. Spooky Village at Village at the Peaks in Longmont celebrated its largest attendance on record this October.