Big Box Stores - Top Content

John Pattison
John Pattison
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"6 Surprising Perspectives on Big Box Stores"

Start here to explore a powerful and provocative list of perspectives about big box stores, and how they're harming our cities and towns.

"The Shopping Mall Death Spiral"

Shopping malls and big box stores are dying. Cities that tethered their future to this experiment are going to struggle, while those that still have a pulse in their core neighborhoods will have a chance at renewed prosperity.

"How Local Cronyism Hurts America's Cities"

Local governments and big corporations routinely collude to bring new national businesses like big box stores into our cities—harming our local economies and our neighbors in the process. Here's how.

"Stacy Mitchell on the Big Box Swindle"

Stacy Mitchell is the author of Big Box Swindle and a senior researcher with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, directing its initiatives on banking and independent business. In this interview, she discusses the origins of the big box store, the way big box stores are subsidized by communities, and how they are undercutting the American middle class.

"No City Should Rely Primarily on Sales Tax"

Using sales tax as a primary revenue source puts a tremendous burden on local governments to be very intentional about their accounting. The lack of feedback in a sales tax system only makes the allure of new growth at the front end of the Ponzi transaction all that much more seductive. Sales tax cities make decisions without hard data, without direct feedback. 

"So Many Shoppers, So Much Unused Parking"

Big box stores gobble up tremendous amounts of land, and much of that is a result of their enormous parking lots. This photo essays shows how utterly unnecessary those huge lots are—even on big shopping days.

"The Dubious Relationship Between Big Box Stores and Sales Tax"

Many local leaders believe that big box stores are worth the investment, resources, and sacrifice in property tax per acre because they make up for that loss in sales tax revenue. Here's why that's not the case.

"Where Every Citizen's Heart Can Sing"

Instead of working to bring new national chains, what if we worked to make every existing block a better place for our citizens?

"Big Box Stores Are Costing Our Cities Far More Than We Ever Imagined."

Here's a simple, clear explanation for why big box stores are causing deep and lasting economic harm in our cities and towns.

"Here's How Much of America Is Occupied by Big Box Stores."

Strong Towns and Urban3 researched and then visualized the vast amount of land that big box stores and their accompanying parking lots occupy across the whole country.



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