The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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January 19, 2013

Krohn: Don’t be thrifty with resale shops

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I’m not sure what department store the councilor has been living under, but thrift stores aren’t exactly new concepts.

Speaking of department stores, city leaders might be turning their noses up at the thrift store because it would be across the street from the city’s pride and joy — Burnsville Mall — and amid the strip of national retail chain stores along County Road 42.

Don’t you just hate it when someone wants to put up a bargain store next to your Bath & Body Works?

Meanwhile, Minneapolis recently went the other way.

The city — for reasons no one could really explain — had a zoning ordinance on its books that said thrift stores had to be at least 1,000 feet from each other. The council got rid of the requirement, hoping to attract more second-hand stores. The stores are now clustering together and drawing lots of shoppers who can easily go from one to another.

As national chain brick-and-mortar stores are showing some decline from online competition and changing shopping patterns, Burnsville may want to embrace a retail concept that shows nothing but growth.  

Tim Krohn is a Free Press staff writer. He can be contacted at 344-6383 or tkrohn@mankatofreepress.com.

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