Thursday, January 10, 2008

An Inner City Staple...The Corner Store

Corner stores or "Mom & Pop" stores have been the staple to many inner-city neighborhoods for well over a century. However with the rise of convenience stores and pharmacies such as Rite Aid and CVS, corner stores have been slowly disappearing from the urban landscape. Well not totally extinct, many can not compete against national corporation chains.

While there have been some corner stores that are known for having inferior products, limited products, marked up prices and even being a front for criminal activity, there is no doubt that through out time many corner stores have served as the life blood and the center piece for many inner-city neighborhoods.

Corner stores were long known for being located only in cities as suburban locales often separated residential and commercial land uses making it illegal to have a residence and a business on the same property. Today, some locales have seen the error in separating land uses and are now encouraging mixed use design.

Unfortunately this shift in thinking may be too late to save corner stores as cities once knew them as many of them have closed of the years and have gone into blight.

So we ask what is your opinion of the corner store? Do you have any favorite memories? glad their closing? Share your thoughts on the comment page.


Anonymous said...

The corner inner city store was and is a staple for goods and services especially where larger mega pharmacy chains as well as 7-11s fear to tread. They sometimes serve as the only place that a traveler who does not know the area can get a bottle of water and maybe some directions, it may the the closest location for a family to get bread or milk. It also serves as an opportunity for an entrepreneur.

Toure Zeigler said...

I agree with the comments of the previous person for the most part. Corner stores are important and can be good for a community along with having a community grocery a community bank, a community dry cleaner and so on. Often times, corner stores are left as the only means of food services or retail in inner city neighborhoods. This has the same affect of nieghborhoods only having CVS stores to get groceries.

Hopefully cities can continue to pressure grocery stores to cahnge their footprints and start investing in inner-city neighborhoods or cities should support smaller community grocery stores.