Online shopping not forcing stores out of business, panelists say – New York News

Despite the continued growth of online shopping, brick-and-mortar retail isn’t going the way of the dinosaurs, some of Long Island’s top real estate executives said Tuesday.

Speaking at a roundtable discussion hosted by the Institute of Real Estate at Hofstra University, a panel representing developers and brokerage and investment firms spoke about some of the challenges the region faces, including the state of retail space locally.

“The whole notion of the retail apocalypse is a joke,” said Joshua Weinkranz, Northeast region president for Kimco Realty Corp., a New Hyde Park-based real estate investment trust and the largest publicly traded owner of open-air shopping centers in the United States. “Our shopping centers are not emptying out because of the internet.”

E-commerce — which has grown at double-digit percentage rates every year since 2005 except during the recession, according to U.S. Department of Commerce data — is “weeding out the weak retailers,” Weinkranz said. Businesses need to evolve if they want to succeed and not become a “dinosaur,” he said.

As of April, more than 20 retailers with locations on Long Island have filed for…

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