But behind those sensational headlines are real people – real communities like Bucks County where real consumers live. And, in Bucks County and beyond, Poag Shopping Centers is the company meeting those needs. In fact, the Memphis-based company saw the writing on the wall for shifting retail habits two decades ago and began developing mixed-use “lifestyle centers.”
Now a common phrase used to describe new commercial construction, the term “Lifestyle Center” was coined by Poag almost twenty years ago to describe their vision – a vision seen by Dan Poag through his own personal shopping experiences. With a background in strip center development, Poag knew shoppers liked the convenience of easily accessible stores. Combined with this known fact, Poag added better retailers, superior architecture, and an inviting environment into his idea creating a defining mark in the retail real estate industry.
And many experts are pointing to the fact that while the landscape is certainly changing, it is not necessarily as drastic as the headlines read. “Retail isn't broken. Stores are.” explained Ron Johnson, a former CEO of Target and Senior VP of Apple, in an interview with Harvard Business Review. “A store has got to be much more than a place to acquire merchandise. It’s got to help people enrich their lives.”
That mentality is one of the ingredients behind the success of Poag Shopping Centers, which purchased Warrington's The Shops at Valley Square in 2016 and is now investing in helping the shops reach their full potential.
“We want you to bring your books. Bring your laptop. Bring your coffee.” proclaimed as The Shops at Valley Square's prepared to unveil their newly designed Town Center on Friday, November 10, 2017.Vice President of Development and COO,
The retail space was designed with the needs of modern consumers in mind – with convenient parking in front of each store, a variety of dining options with outdoor seating available, a and a walkable town-like setting. With interactive games and soft seating, their “Town Center” is a place to relax and spend time with your friends and family.
In addition to major retail anchors like Loft, Banana Republic, and DSW, independent retailers like David Jay Jewelers, Sandcastle Winery, and Head Over Heels Boutique are also finding a home among the well-crafted space
Warrington's Board of Supervisors Chair Shirley Yannich was in attendance at the grand opening ceremony to share how much the Shops have influenced her own local habits – quickly becoming the meeting spot among her friends and family – the “downtown” for a community that does not have a traditional “Main Street” of it's own.
And now Poag is doubling down, investing in their new outdoor recreational space for the communities use. Their “Town Center” features a “Living Room Pavilion” with a working fireplace, comfortable seating, enhanced lighting, games and activities for all ages, and a 32’ diameter “Storytelling Area.”
It is here that community-focused events and holiday celebrations take place, where local traditions will continue to develop. Poag's Senior Vice President of Management and Marketing Dean Shauger explained that the renovation was completed with the intention to help locals “create a relationship with the property.”
The Shops at Valley Square are investing in building a long-term relationship with Bucks County rather than relying on short-term gimmicks. Part of Friday's ceremony included a donation to Warrington Township's Veterans Affairs and a speech of appreciation by Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce's William E. Norcross.
The community is again invited to head to Town Center at the Shops at Valley Square on Friday, November 17th at 6PM for their “Magic in Toyland” Show! Santa will appear followed by the lighting of their new 32′ Holiday tree.
Throughout the year, families and friends will be able to gather to enjoy concerts, holiday celebrations, and even outdoor movies hosted at the new Town Center. In the meantime, head to the inviting outdoor living room to warm yourself by the fire all winter long. You can follow The Shops at Valley Square on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all of the latest events and opportunities, as well as sign up on their website for sales and events happening at your favorite stores. It's all part of creating a thriving relationship with the community.
Shopping Hours are Monday-Saturday 10am – 9pm & Sunday 11am-6pm.