Time was that retail shopping centers and other commercial spaces were off limits to urgent care operators searching for new locations. The presumption was that a medical facility would not only fail to attract foot traffic, but might even drive away shoppers who didn’t want to run into possibly contagious people on their way into Old Navy or coming out of Panera on their way back to work. Fast forward to 2022 and real estate agents are licking their chops at the prospect of filling a vacant storefront with an urgent care center. According to an article just published by The New York Times, medtail (the concept of incorporating medical offices in retail sectors) is now officially A Thing that “has been gaining traction for quite some time.” In fact, according to CoStar Group data quoted in the Times, roughly 20% of leased medical space sits in retail buildings while landlords “are increasingly seeking [medical businesses] out to fill vacancies and help generate foot traffic that may benefit the other occupants.” Bear your relative attractiveness to landlords in mind when looking (and negotiating rent) for new space. And for a deeper, urgent care-specific perspective on the relative merits of locating an urgent care operation in or near a retail setting, read Strategic Real Estate Tactics in Urgent Care Site Selection in the JUCM archive right now.
Suddenly, Retail Landlords Are Warm to the Idea of Urgent Care Tenants