Blog written by Liz Pope

Twenty Ninth Street, located in Boulder, Colo., is described as a unique, urban-development outdoor mall that is meant to depict class and forward-thinking environmentalism. Nevertheless, nearly two years after its grand opening, businesses are grumbling, or at least one is going so far as to sue the center’s developer and manager for lack of foot traffic.

According to one Twenty Ninth Street restaurant called Laudisio, the mall’s developers and managers projected foot traffic of one million people annually. Laudisio, which changed locations and became part of Twenty Ninth Street, spent $3 million in its move. So far, Laudisio claims to have lost more than $1 million and is suing for economic relief.

The Foot Traffic Fix:

From the perspective of a CU grad turned public relations professional, Twenty Ninth Street was built to reflect Boulder — classy boutique shops, pricey, and outdoorsy. It targets CU students who can afford the high costs of school and thus higher costs when it comes to shopping, and Boulderites who can afford housing prices at more than $250 per square foot and want more than just your average FlatIron Crossing mall.

First, Twenty Ninth Street could increase its marketing and public relations efforts to reel in these targeted groups of consumers. Look at the Stapleton neighborhood and shops for example. They were built not too long ago and are thriving due to their ability to bring the neighborhood together by hosting community events, outdoor movie nights, concerts, etc. While Stapleton depicts a perfect family atmosphere for urban living, Twenty Ninth Street could be the perfect atmosphere for urban shopping.

Second, Twenty Ninth Street could also increase its event promotions. They could create events like “bring your dog shopping day,” or host a farmer’s market with an array of booths set up along the sidewalk that runs through the heart of Twenty Ninth Street. These are events for families, dog lovers and people who lead healthy lifestyles.

As for Laudisio, they could use better signage and a stronger strategic messaging platform. Even though I have driven through Twenty Ninth Street on plenty of occasions, it was not until I heard about the restaurant from word-of-mouth talk that I stopped in to try its food. Additionally, I would like to know what makes them different from every other restaurant in Boulder, especially for $20 a plate. Yikes!