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Some businesses don't really have to be open all day long. Put four of those businesses on a slowly turning or intermittent moving merry go round inside a strip mall storefront.
Each business is open for a quarter of the day. And they only have to come up with a quarter of the rent. example: Donuts
and newspapers in the early morning. Insurance late morning.
Clothing or vacuum repairs early afternoon. Pocket barroom til midnight.
Be good for those who have started a business in their homes and are making the transition. Business that repair for hours after making some sales in minutes.
Businesses with a lot of inventory or need to be open 24/7 wouldn't bother, but many little ones might take a chance.
(Yes Bing and Sinatra did a movie where the bar / dance hall turns into a church, but you and the police can stand on the sidewalk and watch these stores switch fronts. "Sit down your rocking the boat, Sir" )
||I'm not sure about how much you actually save with
the merry-go-round, but a well designed strip mall
with the right mix of businesses could share parking
lot space very efficiently.
||My first annotation was based on the assumption
that generally, total space is more of an issue than
||It seems like the places where storefront area is a
limiting factor compared to total space is an area
with multi-story buildings. So if you build this as a
Ferris wheel instead of a merry-go-round, each
store gets ground floor storefront during their
prime time while taking advantage of vertical
space. A set of stairs or an elevator could allow
the store to still accept customers, just less
conveniently, when the store wasn't at ground
level. Hmm, a restaurant might do well to be at
ground level for the lunch crowd, but have a nice
view from the top of the building in the evening.