• Tue. May 28th, 2024

US Retail Hubs Bringing Big Crowds Also Attract Mass Shooters


Jun 13, 2023
US Retail Hubs Bringing Big Crowds Also Attract Mass Shooters


When Simon Property Group recently reopened its Dallas-area outlet mall after a mass shooting, it was a sobering reminder that retail properties are hardly immune from such deadly incidents.

There have been at least 39 mass shootings that resulted in deaths at retail properties since 1966, the most of any property type, according to the Violence Prevention Project Research Center, a nonprofit organization seeking to reduce violence through research to inform public policy. The nonprofit group classifies retail as stores, supermarkets, shopping centers and malls, as well as service providers such as barber shops, nail salons, massage parlors and banks.

Restaurants, bars and nightclubs make up their own category and have been the locations of the second most mass shootings by property type, according to the Violence Project. The Violence Project defines a mass shooting as an incident in a public space where at least four victims are killed by a gun, “and the murders are not attributable to any other underlying” issue such as criminal activity, an argument or a romantic triangle.

Some publicly traded landlords and retailers have had to prepare shareholders about the possibility of a mass shooting and the lasting effect it might have on their business. Simon Property Group, the largest U.S. mall owner with more than 200 properties, reopened the Allen Premium Outlets on May 31 after the Dallas-area outlet mall was temporarily closed for more than three weeks after a mass shooting that killed eight people.

The closing of the 100% leased 548,000-square-foot outlet mall affected about 120 retailers and thousands of jobs.

Simon Property Group, which also owns Greenwood Park Mall in Indiana where a shooter killed three people last year, has warned investors that mass shootings and other public safety risks could negatively affect its business, including from decreased sales, revenue and overall asset value.

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