The Benefits of Retail Space in Mixed-Use Buildings

Our latest development to break ground, Optima Lakeview, is a mixed-use building that’s bringing in-demand and exciting retail space to the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. Combining residential and retail into one building (earning the name “mixed-use”) is a time-old way to reap benefits for both residents and businesses alike. So what exactly are those benefits? 

Understanding Mixed-Use Buildings

For starters, let’s define what a mixed-use building is. A mixed-use building (MXD) is a building with three or more significantly-sized, revenue-producing businesses, whether those businesses are offices, retail stores, restaurants or other hospitality locales. The purpose of MXDs is to maximize the efficiency and value of a limited space, especially in urban areas, where space is in high demand. 

In addition to the underway Optima Lakeview, many other Optima projects are also mixed-use buildings. Optima Signature, our luxury condo community in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood, features retail tenants such as Bedazzled Nail Salon, GoodVets Veterinarian Office, Egg Harbor Cafe, Guidepost Montessori School, Runaway Fitness and an interior connection to the Whole Foods nextdoor. 

Retail-space-filled plaza at Optima Signature
Retail-filled plaza at Optima Signature

Benefits of Retail Space 

Introducing mixed-use buildings into a neighborhood means retail space is closer than ever to residential. For residents, this translates into a more pedestrian-friendly experience: their needs are accessible and within walking distance. For the environment, increased walkability also means less pollution from transportation. And for business-owners, their storefronts gain increased exposure as people stroll by, leading to increased sales and success. Overall, mixed-use buildings lead to a stronger sense of community and better quality of life for both residents and businesses. 

At Optima, we make the most of our retail space by thoughtfully hand-selecting each business. Retail space in our residential buildings is yet another amenity that serves to enhance the lives not just of our own residents, but of the surrounding community, too.

Community Growth and the Importance of Retail Space

At Optima, we don’t just construct buildings, we create communities. At every step of our process, from selecting location, to construction, to leasing and renting out our retail space, we make decisions leveraging what we can provide to enhance our residents’ lives and the lives of the people in the surrounding neighborhood. 

At Optima Signature in Chicago, our retail tenants include Egg Harbor Cafe, Guidepost Montessori School, RUNAWAY Fitness, Bedazzled Nails and GoodVets. These amenities enhance the lives of our residents and neighbors, creating onsite amenities and vibrant gathering places that encourage connection and socialization. Not only are our retail tenants adding to Optima Signature, but they contribute to the greater Streeterville community Egg Harbor is a beloved breakfast staple in the Chicago suburbs, and their Optima Signature location will be their debut in downtown Chicago. And Guidepost Montessori School was the first of its kind for the neighborhood.

At Optima Sonoran Village in Scottsdale, one of our retail tenants, Kaleidoscope Juice, has become a place where people can meet old and new friends over a meal, juice or coffee throughout the day. Residents might meet someone in the gym at Optima Sonoran Village and decide to reconvene on their patio — having the retail space to gather deepens connections within the community, allowing residents to get to know their neighbors. 

When selecting our tenants, it’s vital to our mission that the retail we bring to our communities is additive, contributing new spaces for our residents to use and bringing much needed and desired resources to the neighborhoods we call home.


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