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Article

Places of Phygital Shopping Experiences? The New Supply Frontier of Business Improvement Districts in the Digital Age

Center for Geographical Studies, Institute of Geography and Spatial Planning, University of Lisbon, 1600-276 Lisboa, Portugal
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Academic Editor: Lisa McNeill
Sustainability 2021, 13(23), 13150; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313150
Received: 7 November 2021 / Revised: 17 November 2021 / Accepted: 24 November 2021 / Published: 27 November 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Retail Systems: Vulnerability, Resilience and Sustainability)
Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) have flourished as local governance structures to foster the vitality and viability of traditional shopping districts that have struggled to adapt to retail changes. This paper examines the evolution of placemaking activities that former UK government-funded pilot BIDs have delivered over the last 15 years. Drawing on an exploratory sequential research design that combines a qualitative and quantitative thematic analysis of 72 BIDs’ business plans, the findings suggest that UK BIDs have described a non-hierarchical operational framework as services providers considering that: (i) elementary placemaking services, such as ‘clean, green and safe’, have regained thematic relevance due to recent environmental sustainability concerns; (ii) higher-tier lobbying and advocacy services have been an operational priority since BIDs’ inception; (iii) while consumer and place marketing/branding services have seen continual thematic reductions, digital presence and marketing services have emerged as a new category of operational activities. These results extend place management and BID-related literature by discussing the growing role that digital marketing services may perform in the management of town centers and high streets and are relevant to practitioners as it discusses how place management organizations should reposition their operational strategies towards the creation of places of phygital shopping experiences. View Full-Text
Keywords: Business Improvement Districts; place management; placemaking; experiential places; phygitalization; phygital places; urban revitalization; urban sustainability; retail resilience Business Improvement Districts; place management; placemaking; experiential places; phygitalization; phygital places; urban revitalization; urban sustainability; retail resilience
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MDPI and ACS Style

Silva, D.G.; Cachinho, H. Places of Phygital Shopping Experiences? The New Supply Frontier of Business Improvement Districts in the Digital Age. Sustainability 2021, 13, 13150. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313150

AMA Style

Silva DG, Cachinho H. Places of Phygital Shopping Experiences? The New Supply Frontier of Business Improvement Districts in the Digital Age. Sustainability. 2021; 13(23):13150. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313150

Chicago/Turabian Style

Silva, Diogo G., and Herculano Cachinho. 2021. "Places of Phygital Shopping Experiences? The New Supply Frontier of Business Improvement Districts in the Digital Age" Sustainability 13, no. 23: 13150. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132313150

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