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Bloomberg reports that Target built a new store in Katy, Texas, that offers a blueprint for a larger format in which the backroom is "devoted to handling online orders for same-day pickup," and "is five times as large as at stores of a similar size."

The new store is 150,000 square feet, about 20,000 square feet larger than Target's average unit.  According to the story, "Target is betting that the new blueprint will boost its strategy of using stores as fulfillment hubs for digital orders — an approach that gained ground during the pandemic. Next year, the retailer will incorporate updated design elements into about 30 new locations of all sizes and half its planned 200 remodels and then expand their use in 2024."

Bloomberg also writes that "the new concept … is roomy enough to fit an expanded food section and outposts for partners such as Ulta Beauty Inc. and Walt Disney Co. It also adds large windows, plants and walls of reclaimed wood. The righthand entrance is designed to cater to customers looking to stay and shop for a while. It funnels shoppers by a Starbucks counter illuminated by natural light."

KC's View:

The argument here for some time has been that every new store that is being designed ought to be set up for e-commerce functionality.  Not to say that they all need to have a maximum amount of space to handle both delivery and pickup, nor that all these functions have to be operative immediately.

At the very least, though, the infrastructure has to be there so that down the road, sections can be easily converted, with piping and wiring all available for easy access.  It may cost a little more money right now, and require a different approach to design - but it is likely to save money down the road.