In some countries, small town-centre shops are going out of business because people tend to drive to large out-of-town stores. As a result, people without cars have limited access to out of town stores, and it may result in an increase in the use of cars. Do you think the disadvantages of this change outweigh its advantages?
In recent years, because of urbanization, a mushroom growth of large shopping malls has been seen in the suburbs of the cities and towns. Many people are worried that this phenomenon may lead to the increase in use of cars and this would not be good for the environment. Looking at the advantages of having large shopping malls in the outskirts of cities, I believe that the disadvantage of increased use of cars can be overlooked.
There are many benefits of having shopping malls in the out-of-town sites. To begin with, we all know that that the suburban land costs much less and therefore the rents and other operating costs of these shopping complexes is much less. Lower operating cost directly leads to lower prices. Secondly, the shopping centres in these areas would be definitely bigger because of more availability of land and so consumers will have more choices as more variety could be displayed.
Furthermore, it would help ease urban traffic and housing pressures the city centre. The city centres are already too congested and opening big shopping centres here would worsen the situation. We all know that rapid urbanization is taking place and more and more people are shifting from the villages to the cities. If these shopping centres are on the outskirts of cities, they would be nearer to the neighbouring villages and many of them would not then need to move to cities as some comforts of the cities would be nearer to their homes.
Another big advantage would be that because of these shopping centres, more businesses would also relocate from the over-congested city centres to the suburbs and this would also help to lessen the overcrowding within the cities. It has also been seen that when people have to go far to do shopping, they plan it well so that they don’t have to make very frequent visits and so it does not add a lot to the use of the car. Small town-centre shops are facing some challenge, no doubt, but they still have their place because of the personal touch and their ease of accessibility.
To put it in a nutshell, I pen down saying that, having shopping centres in the suburbs definitely has more advantages than disadvantages.