News

Besieged by vacancies, Town & Country Village wants to welcome medical offices

Commission recommends allowing conversion of up to 15% of ground-floor retail space

A nearly empty parking lot at Town & Country Village in Palo Alto on March 17, 2020. With its vacancies rates now climbing, the shopping center is looking to convert some retail spaces to medical offices. Photo by Lloyd Lee.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic began to shut down local businesses last March, the Town & Country Village was staring into a murky future.

With online shopping on a steady rise, the shopping center's boutique shops have taken a hit and the shopping center's retail vacancy rate had risen from 1.4% in 2018 to 8.2% in 2019, according to Jim Ellis, whose company, Ellis Partners, owns the mall. While it dipped back down to 4.6%, the economic shutdown that began in March has since forced many retailers and restaurants to shut down. Mayfield Bakery & Café, GNC, Patrick James, Sweaty Betty, SpaceNK and Ella are among the businesses that have shuttered during the pandemic.

Today, the vacancy rate is at about 21% and is expected to rise, Ellis said.

To address this trend, Ellis Partners is proposing a change that could permanently transform the popular shopping center: converting some of the retail spaces into medical offices. Last December, it requested that the city allow up to 20% of its ground-floor retail space to become medical offices, a use that is currently prohibited by the zoning code. It also requested that the city allow up to 30% of the shopping center's total space to be used for medical offices.

In explaining the explosion in vacancies, Ellis underscored Wednesday night that the trend began well before the pandemic, as online shopping began to grow in popularity. The past year has turned what was a major problem for Town & Country retailers into a "fatal" one, Ellis told the Planning and Transportation Commission during a public hearing on the request. Reducing rents, he said, hasn't helped.

What's local journalism worth to you?

Support Palo Alto Online for as little as $5/month.

Learn more

"I don't know how much lower than zero our rents can go with some of the tenants," Ellis said. "We've been in constant contact with every tenant to try to help them and work with them best we can, within reason."

The commission responded to Ellis' request on Wednesday by supporting a zone change that would provide some flexibility for Town & Country, though not as much as the mall owners had hoped for. By a 3-2 vote, with commissioners Ed Lauing and Doria Summa dissenting, the commission recommended allowing up to 15% of the ground-floor retail area to switch to medical offices and specified that no more than 25.8% of total mall space can be used for office space.

Over the course of a lengthy debate, commissioners struggled to reconcile the need to help Town & Country, which they all acknowledged was a treasured asset, and the need to ensure that the mall remains primarily a retail center. Lauing and Summa both suggested that people are anxious to get out and support local businesses in person as soon as the pandemic ends. Adopting a change that would allow permanent conversions of retail spaces to medical offices is premature, they argued.

"I think the sad vacancy rates are predominantly because of the pandemic," Lauing said. "People are staying away from stores right now not because they don't like them; it's because they're locked in. … I think they want to be shoppers ASAP."

To allay some of these concerns, Commissioner Michael Alcheck proposed limiting Town & Country's medical-office tenants to those that sign their leases in 2021 and barring them from lease commitments that extend beyond 10 years. With the commission deadlocked over whether it should approve any changes, the two members who were more sympathetic to Town & Country's request — Chair Bart Hechtman and Commissioner Cari Templeton — agreed to include these provisions in the panel's recommendation.

Stay informed

Get daily headlines sent straight to your inbox.

Sign up

If the council adopts the commission's recommendation, Town & Country would be able to lease space to medical practices such as clinics, dental offices and acupuncture specialists, among others.

Dean Rubinson, director of development at Ellis Partners, wrote in his request for the zone change that "allowing for those types of medical services will allow Town & Country Village to offer more reasons to visit the property for these needs and to stay and shop for other goods and services in Palo Alto. It will also give the shopping center "a much better chance of returning this cherished property to its pre-Covid occupancy levels."

Men's apparel brand Patrick James closed its store at Palo Alto's Town & Country Village in September 2020. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Town & Country, he said, is now "in the red" and it continues to get deeper in the red every week, Rubinson said Wednesday. While he acknowledged the commission's preference to consider citywide strategies for supporting retail rather than approving zone changes that would benefit a single shopping area, Rubinson also suggested that Ellis Partners might have to sell the mall to a bank or a national mall chain if its request is rejected.

"We want be the curators of Town & Country for another 15 years," Rubinson said. "That may not happen if we don't have some flexibility here."

Not everyone was swayed by this argument. Summa suggested that Town & Country's proposed cure may be "worse than the sickness" and that allowing medical clinics would effectively kill what's special about the shopping center. She also alluded to the shopping center's close proximity to both the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and the Stanford University Medical Center.

"I think there's a better way to do that that wouldn't be as permanent and be more flexible," Summa said. "I'm really concerned about having medical offices in this location, when we have a very large medical facility right next door and a huge medical facility a quarter-mile away."

Hechtman said that while he likes the idea championed by Alcheck and Lauing of coming up with a holistic retail strategy for the entire city, he also supported giving Town & Country some near-term relief. He noted that in the two decades since Ellis Company took ownership of Town & Country, the shopping center transformed from a "sleepy" area to one that was buzzing with activity before the pandemic.

"I think it has added something to the fabric of Palo Alto," Hechtman said.

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

Craving a new voice in Peninsula dining?

Sign up for the Peninsula Foodist newsletter.

Sign up now

Follow Palo Alto Online and the Palo Alto Weekly on Twitter @paloaltoweekly, Facebook and on Instagram @paloaltoonline for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

Besieged by vacancies, Town & Country Village wants to welcome medical offices

Commission recommends allowing conversion of up to 15% of ground-floor retail space

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Thu, Feb 11, 2021, 12:30 pm

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic began to shut down local businesses last March, the Town & Country Village was staring into a murky future.

With online shopping on a steady rise, the shopping center's boutique shops have taken a hit and the shopping center's retail vacancy rate had risen from 1.4% in 2018 to 8.2% in 2019, according to Jim Ellis, whose company, Ellis Partners, owns the mall. While it dipped back down to 4.6%, the economic shutdown that began in March has since forced many retailers and restaurants to shut down. Mayfield Bakery & Café, GNC, Patrick James, Sweaty Betty, SpaceNK and Ella are among the businesses that have shuttered during the pandemic.

Today, the vacancy rate is at about 21% and is expected to rise, Ellis said.

To address this trend, Ellis Partners is proposing a change that could permanently transform the popular shopping center: converting some of the retail spaces into medical offices. Last December, it requested that the city allow up to 20% of its ground-floor retail space to become medical offices, a use that is currently prohibited by the zoning code. It also requested that the city allow up to 30% of the shopping center's total space to be used for medical offices.

In explaining the explosion in vacancies, Ellis underscored Wednesday night that the trend began well before the pandemic, as online shopping began to grow in popularity. The past year has turned what was a major problem for Town & Country retailers into a "fatal" one, Ellis told the Planning and Transportation Commission during a public hearing on the request. Reducing rents, he said, hasn't helped.

"I don't know how much lower than zero our rents can go with some of the tenants," Ellis said. "We've been in constant contact with every tenant to try to help them and work with them best we can, within reason."

The commission responded to Ellis' request on Wednesday by supporting a zone change that would provide some flexibility for Town & Country, though not as much as the mall owners had hoped for. By a 3-2 vote, with commissioners Ed Lauing and Doria Summa dissenting, the commission recommended allowing up to 15% of the ground-floor retail area to switch to medical offices and specified that no more than 25.8% of total mall space can be used for office space.

Over the course of a lengthy debate, commissioners struggled to reconcile the need to help Town & Country, which they all acknowledged was a treasured asset, and the need to ensure that the mall remains primarily a retail center. Lauing and Summa both suggested that people are anxious to get out and support local businesses in person as soon as the pandemic ends. Adopting a change that would allow permanent conversions of retail spaces to medical offices is premature, they argued.

"I think the sad vacancy rates are predominantly because of the pandemic," Lauing said. "People are staying away from stores right now not because they don't like them; it's because they're locked in. … I think they want to be shoppers ASAP."

To allay some of these concerns, Commissioner Michael Alcheck proposed limiting Town & Country's medical-office tenants to those that sign their leases in 2021 and barring them from lease commitments that extend beyond 10 years. With the commission deadlocked over whether it should approve any changes, the two members who were more sympathetic to Town & Country's request — Chair Bart Hechtman and Commissioner Cari Templeton — agreed to include these provisions in the panel's recommendation.

If the council adopts the commission's recommendation, Town & Country would be able to lease space to medical practices such as clinics, dental offices and acupuncture specialists, among others.

Dean Rubinson, director of development at Ellis Partners, wrote in his request for the zone change that "allowing for those types of medical services will allow Town & Country Village to offer more reasons to visit the property for these needs and to stay and shop for other goods and services in Palo Alto. It will also give the shopping center "a much better chance of returning this cherished property to its pre-Covid occupancy levels."

Town & Country, he said, is now "in the red" and it continues to get deeper in the red every week, Rubinson said Wednesday. While he acknowledged the commission's preference to consider citywide strategies for supporting retail rather than approving zone changes that would benefit a single shopping area, Rubinson also suggested that Ellis Partners might have to sell the mall to a bank or a national mall chain if its request is rejected.

"We want be the curators of Town & Country for another 15 years," Rubinson said. "That may not happen if we don't have some flexibility here."

Not everyone was swayed by this argument. Summa suggested that Town & Country's proposed cure may be "worse than the sickness" and that allowing medical clinics would effectively kill what's special about the shopping center. She also alluded to the shopping center's close proximity to both the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and the Stanford University Medical Center.

"I think there's a better way to do that that wouldn't be as permanent and be more flexible," Summa said. "I'm really concerned about having medical offices in this location, when we have a very large medical facility right next door and a huge medical facility a quarter-mile away."

Hechtman said that while he likes the idea championed by Alcheck and Lauing of coming up with a holistic retail strategy for the entire city, he also supported giving Town & Country some near-term relief. He noted that in the two decades since Ellis Company took ownership of Town & Country, the shopping center transformed from a "sleepy" area to one that was buzzing with activity before the pandemic.

"I think it has added something to the fabric of Palo Alto," Hechtman said.

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

Comments

Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 11, 2021 at 12:48 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 11, 2021 at 12:48 pm

Why the rush to push this through now? The county is finally opening up more for shopping and outdoor dining. The photo of the empty parking lot from last March is deceptive because that's right around the time the shutdown began.

"To allay some of these concerns, Commissioner Michael Alcheck proposed limiting Town & Country's medical-office tenants to those that sign their leases in 2021 and barring them from lease commitments that extend beyond 10 years. With the commission deadlocked over whether it should approve any changes, the two members who were more sympathetic to Town & Country's request — Chair Bart Hechtman and Commissioner Cari Templeton — agreed to include these provisions in the panel's recommendation."

Shame on them! A 10-year lease commitment at a time when the pandemic is winding down is egregious. Given all the uncertainties, the lease should be year-to-year!


Bystander
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 11, 2021 at 12:55 pm
Bystander, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Feb 11, 2021 at 12:55 pm

I would be against rushing to alter this.

As soon as Paly and Stanford students are back on campus and out and about in that part of town, they will be looking for hang out spots in Town & Country as well as their parents, the faculty, visitors to campus and visitors for sports.

We are losing so many of these types of places due to the lockdown, but preventing the return of these or similar business would, in my opinion, be a big mistake.


Chris
Registered user
University South
on Feb 11, 2021 at 6:27 pm
Chris, University South
Registered user
on Feb 11, 2021 at 6:27 pm

Palo Alto like most places is way overstored.

It would actually be helpful to the health of the remaining retailers if the amount of retail space is reduced. There have been too many stores chasing too little business.

We need housing where commercial and retail space is now.

The City Council has fixed ideas, and the reject the evidence of what is going on elsewhere. Palo Alto is not immune from the laws of economics no matter what CC thinks. If they are not more flexible, they will lead Palo Alto over the cliff.


Leland J.
Registered user
Professorville
on Feb 11, 2021 at 9:23 pm
Leland J. , Professorville
Registered user
on Feb 11, 2021 at 9:23 pm
The Voice of Palo Alto
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Feb 11, 2021 at 10:56 pm
The Voice of Palo Alto, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Feb 11, 2021 at 10:56 pm

“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic began to shut down local businesses last March, the Town & Country Village was staring into a murky future.”

It may or may not have been staring into a murky future pre-pandemic. I disagree. I know that online shopping is obviously taking over, but many of us Paloaltonians just even love to go to Town And Country for the atmosphere. Most of us here in PA would agree that Town And Country is an all time classic. How many meals from PA have we have all gotten there?! Steak burgers, cupcakes, and cookies! Many people just like to go there for the atmosphere and hang out to kill a few hours there on the weekends. I think without this pandemic it may have had to close a few shops possibly but it would have chugged along and stayed open overall. So please do not welcome boring medical offices/clinics. I also don’t necessarily want to run into sick people (in normal times) headed to a medical office when I’m trying to relax at the mall. That seems like a horrible mix. Please allow new and exciting small businesses to open there post pandemic. Final note: the pic chosen is hilariously dated March 17th, 2020. March was when everything started shutting down because of the pandemic so of course the parking lot was empty. It’s usually not that bad!


Squidsie
Registered user
another community
on Feb 12, 2021 at 10:28 am
Squidsie, another community
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 10:28 am

Of course Town and Country has a lot of vacancies. Their rents are hideously high. They are a victim of their own greed during the boom times.


Observer
Registered user
Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Feb 12, 2021 at 10:57 am
Observer, Leland Manor/Garland Drive
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 10:57 am

Squidsie has it just right. Ellis put the big squeeze on tenants over the last several years, jacking up rents at unconscionable rates of increase, and in the process forced out many long-time tenants - particulary the smaller and often locally-owned specialty stores. They deserve what they have created, and no way should they be bailed out by permitting a reduction in the required retail focus of the center.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:05 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:05 am

I agree with the last 2 posters and I'm still fuming about Ellis' treatment of Prestige boutique, a 40+-yr-old second generation family business they induced to move into a larger space just before the dot.bomb crash and then refused to let them move back into their previously empty smaller store.

The city's business "development" department refused to for a full year to help and their young low-ranked rep was "shocked" that the several hundred people who showed up for their going-away party were upset. Another business was closed for months while Ellis delayed making needed repairs, depriving the business AND Ellis which takes a huge commission on sales of needed revenue.

There's NO earthly reason to reward Ellis. Unless it's for campaign contributions.


Patrick Ehrhard
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:22 am
Patrick Ehrhard, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:22 am

Town and Country Village is an anochronism. The ones in San Jose and Sunnyvale are long gone.

The owner should simply consider selling the property for development whether it be a new shopping center (e.g. Santana Row), other commercial enterprises (e.g. Sunnyvale), or high-rise housing complexes.

The Town & Country most 'old-time' Palo Alto residents remember is long gone.

No more amusement park, donkey wagons, record store, Stickney's, S. Christian Copenhagen, Prestige, Peninsula Box Office, Spiro's Sporting Goods, Maserati dealership, Nippon Goldfish Company, Patrick Janes + Williams Cutlery and the Village Cheese Shop have downsized due to escalating rents and smaller customer base.

And besides, Millennial shoppers (if any) are oblivious to all of the aforementioned stores.

Times change and it's time to move on.


resident
Registered user
Stanford
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:22 am
resident, Stanford
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:22 am

What are the plans for parking? And how will this affect the other restaurants and stores?

Personally, my main reason for going to the Town and Country Shopping Center is to go to Trader Joes. Since I am there, I will often pick up something at CVS and get a croissant at Douce France or pick up sushi at the Sushi House.

I will not be going to the Town and Country Shopping Center if I have to worry about parking, since there is a Trader Joes in Menlo Park that is just as close to my home. If parking becomes an issue, the smaller stores and restaurants will not get my patronage.

I doubt that medical clinics, including dental and optometry clinics, will attract more customers to the stores and restaurants in the Town and Country Shopping Center. Again, using my own experience as a guide, location is not an important criteria for selecting my health care. I use reviews and recommendations to pick my dentist and optometrist, location is less important.

In contrast, location and parking are important criteria for deciding where I do my shopping.


resident
Registered user
Stanford
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:29 am
resident, Stanford
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:29 am

I also agree with the first two comments made by "Online Name" and "Bystander". This is not the time to make a decision about zoning in the Town and Country Shopping Center. When the pandemic is over and students return, small restaurants and other small businesses will thrive.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:51 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:51 am

Speaking of the choice between the Trader Joe's in Menlo Park and Palo Alto, it's often faster and easier for me to drive to Menlo Park than the closer one in Palo Alto because of the long-standing mess with the traffic lights and intersection.

If Mr. Ellis wants to complain about something and the city wants to help, let them deal with why it's taken them SO long to fix light timing and congestion.

Tell them NOT to make it worse by allowing the Casti expansion which will further congest Embarcadero!


Anonymous
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:04 pm
Anonymous, Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Feb 12, 2021 at 11:04 pm

The current parking lot is dreadful and it’s stressful driving through it. I shop at Books Inc., though.
I like the idea above to-develop the center into something exciting and taller like Santana Row! I don’t like the idea of mixing with ill people visiting medical offices there. Dentists and optometrists would be fine -


Facts please!
Registered user
Green Acres
on Feb 13, 2021 at 10:40 am
Facts please!, Green Acres
Registered user
on Feb 13, 2021 at 10:40 am

Why is there a rule in the 1st place that prohibits dental offices and clinics? Let's do all we can to preserve T&C - it's one of the rare nice looking outdoor mall.


Anonymous
Registered user
Fairmeadow
on Feb 13, 2021 at 1:28 pm
Anonymous, Fairmeadow
Registered user
on Feb 13, 2021 at 1:28 pm

It is astonishing that the city has any say at all about whether the owner of the mall should lease out his properties to retailers or medical services. Does the city know any better than the owner which type of tenants have more demands for space than the other? If so, why doesn't the city pay the owner a fair price, buy the property and operate it itself? It seems to me that all it is doing is to grandstand with other people's money.


JS1
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 13, 2021 at 4:38 pm
JS1, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Feb 13, 2021 at 4:38 pm

Medical office uses require more parking spaces than retail. Finding available parking at Town and Country is already difficult. Allowing a conversion of retail to medical office will only make parking and congested parking circulation worse. More people will be circulating through the existing parking lots looking for open parking spaces.

Ellis was tough on tenants in good times - forcing existing and long-term tenants out in favor of higher-paying tenants. It is difficult to give Ellis too much sympathy now. I can give them some credit for revitalizing the shopping center from when the prior owner ran the center, but Ellis has made a lot of money since they bought in. Yes we have had a pandemic that has impacted Ellis, but they have deep pockets and the pandemic will be over in the next 6+ months - retail at Town and Country will soon be back.

If the City were to eventually allow some Medical Office uses at Town and Country, It should be a lower percentage than 15% and for a shorter period of time (sunset in 5 years).


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 13, 2021 at 4:43 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 13, 2021 at 4:43 pm

If medical and dental offices are allowed in Town & Country as Mr. Ellis wants, will his company get a commission/share of the medical/dental practices' revenues like his company gets from retail tenants? Would this transition be depriving PA of sales tax revenues since I don't think medical services are taxed?


AlexDeLarge
Registered user
Midtown
on Feb 13, 2021 at 10:32 pm
AlexDeLarge, Midtown
Registered user
on Feb 13, 2021 at 10:32 pm

Even though I like T&C and generally go weekly, I'm not really feeling Mr Ellis' pain here.


Frustrated
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Feb 14, 2021 at 7:51 am
Frustrated , Crescent Park
Registered user
on Feb 14, 2021 at 7:51 am

I would love to be able to lease retail space at town and country and but the rents are extremely high at $6sq foot and no room for negotiation. Rents have not fallen and Ellis is intentionally keeping them high to force this discussion to convert the medical offices. Don’t be fooled.


J. Manders
Registered user
Barron Park
on Feb 14, 2021 at 9:06 am
J. Manders, Barron Park
Registered user
on Feb 14, 2021 at 9:06 am

Are there that many local doctors and dentists to fill all of the vacancies in Town and Country Village?

If so, maybe Town and Country could be converted to a full-scale medical/dental clinic serving the entire community.

There's not much real shopping left to do there anymore.


Anonymous
Registered user
Fairmeadow
on Feb 17, 2021 at 11:19 am
Anonymous, Fairmeadow
Registered user
on Feb 17, 2021 at 11:19 am

JS1 wrote: "Medical office uses require more parking spaces than retail."

Do you have any evidence for your assertion? Why would (say) a collection of dental offices occupying the same area as (say) Trader Joe's or Teleferic require more parking space? It seems to me more plausible that a restaurant or supermarket at peak hours has a higher density of humans than a dental office. (Parking is a moot issue at non-peak hours anyway.)

And why shouldn't Ellis maximizes its profits? That's what people are in business for, isn't it? If that does not suit your sensibility, you should ask the city to take over the property so that you can subsidize what you like with your tax dollars.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 17, 2021 at 11:39 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 17, 2021 at 11:39 am

Smaller T&C stores like Ruti's and other clothing stores have fewer than 3 employees. A busy place like Peet's has fewer than 3 counter people/harristas and maybe another stock person. A dentist office has a receptionist/billing person, a dentist and several hygienists. (My dentist has 5.) My oral surgeon on Cowper has 2 surgeons, 2+ receptionists/billing people and several nurses and hygienists for EACH surgeon.

They would be parked there all day, not just at peak hours. Note that T&C parking is in such short supply that they limited parking at lunch times to 30 minutes AND offered valet parking.

I repeat my question: are medical services taxed and would the city be sacrificing sales tax revenues from this move? (I'm staring at a recent dental bill and there's no line item for tax.)


Anonymous
Registered user
Fairmeadow
on Feb 18, 2021 at 8:20 pm
Anonymous, Fairmeadow
Registered user
on Feb 18, 2021 at 8:20 pm

Online Name wrote:

"Smaller T&C stores like Ruti's and other clothing stores have fewer than 3 employees. A busy place like Peet's has fewer than 3 counter people/harristas and maybe another stock person."

So, the customers of a store or coffee shop do not need parking? Does a coffee shop have no tables for customers to sit down and drink their coffee at leisure? Considering the position of Town and Country Village, how many customers will arrive on foot instead of by car? Whether the cars are parked there all day is irrelevant, for the only real concern is peak hours, when a lot of people are present at the mall at the same time. Does anyone think a dental office has more peak hours than a coffee shop or restaurant?

Furthermore, medical and dental practices put a natural limit on density: you just cannot cram more than a doctor and a patient into the same room at the same time. Do stores and restaurants and coffee shops have the same limit?


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 18, 2021 at 10:33 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Feb 18, 2021 at 10:33 pm

Everyone needs parking. And that's my point about medical/doctor's offices which have more staff parked all day which will discourage retail customers.

Also, you missed my point about doctors/dentists and their nurses who simultaneously work on/treat one patient.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Post a comment

In order to encourage respectful and thoughtful discussion, commenting on stories is available to those who are registered users. If you are already a registered user and the commenting form is not below, you need to log in. If you are not registered, you can do so here.

Please make sure your comments are truthful, on-topic and do not disrespect another poster. Don't be snarky or belittling. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

See our announcement about requiring registration for commenting.