Enlarge / A rendering of 851 W. Randolph Avenue in Chicago.
Final yr, a report from the Chicago Tribune claimed that Google was “near finalizing a lease” for a flagship retail retailer in Chicago. The 14,000-square-foot area would have been Google’s first main retail area that wasn’t a brief pop-up retailer or a demo space inside a third-party electronics retailer. Eight months later, the Chicago Tribune is again to report the deal is off, after “Google halted plans late within the leasing course of.”
After we first wrote up the information eight months in the past, it got here with the caveat of “In terms of Google and retail, nothing is for certain till the shop truly opens.” You’ll be able to add this retailer to the rising record of started-and-stopped retail tasks. Who remembers the notorious Google Barge, a floating modular retail area with a “social gathering deck” constructed out of an previous container ship? Then there was that point in 2015 when Google leased a 5,000-square-foot retail area in New York Metropolis, spent $6 million renovating it, after which canned the thought earlier than the shop opened.
When requested to remark by the Tribune on this newest deal falling aside, Google solely supplied the standard assertion of “We don’t touch upon rumor or hypothesis.”
Google frequently snaps up actual property for workplace area, with the newest buy being New York Metropolis’s well-known Chelsea Market, however retail shops have been a sore spot for the corporate. It makes tons of , together with smartphones, laptops, sensible audio system, Nest sensible dwelling merchandise, VR goggles, and extra, however it will probably solely present them alongside competing merchandise typically electronics shops. In terms of brick-and-mortar retail, Google finds itself in its far-too-typical place of chasing Apple, which has over 500 retail shops worldwide.