Philly’s Fashion District and the future of shopping malls

Listen 48:59
Adults play in the 'highly instagrammable' marshmallow pit at the Fashion District's Candytopia exhibit. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Adults play in the 'highly instagrammable' marshmallow pit at the Fashion District's Candytopia exhibit. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Guests: Elizabeth Wellington, Joseph Hancock

Philadelphia’s Fashion District opened last week. It’s the remodel of the Gallery Mall on Market Street in Center City. Reviews have been mixed for the $420 million-plus makeover, which the developers are calling “retailtainment” and includes shops like H&M, Ulta, Eddie Bauer, Armani X, Starbucks, City Winery, a bowling alley and a movie theater. In recent years, shopping malls around the country have been closing, hit hard by competition from online shopping and big box stores. This hour, we’ll look at the new Fashion District and the state of retail in our region and around the country. Also, the battle between ecommerce and brick-and-mortar stores. And the influence of social media on our shopping habits and styles. Our guests are JOSEPH HANCOCK, professor of retail and merchandising at Drexel University and ELIZABETH WELLINGTON, lifestyle columnist for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.