The number of gyms leased in malls doubled over the past five years, CNBC reported. In the first half of 2017, fitness studios occupied 17 percent of the retail space leased by the most active retail tenants, according to commercial real estate information and marketing firm CoStar.
In the past, a mall gym was seen as undesirable. Mall owners thought a
fitness center would take up too many parking spaces, or that sweaty
patrons in workout clothes would ruin the ambience for other customers.
But as shoppers turn more to online purchasing, mall
owners are seeking different ways to engage consumers. Faced with the
prospect of filling empty stores when large retail tenants move out,
malls that once shunned gyms are turning to fitness centers to drive
foot traffic.. . . more