rd+d: How many full-service restaurants is a new center now likely to include?
Loch: Success seems to come in masses, so we create a critical mass of restaurants in all of our projects. That means maybe four to six quality restaurants, which effectively serve as another anchor and also extends the hours for the property.
rd+d: Large chains have long dominated shopping center spaces. Is that still the case?
Loch: We contour the restaurant selection to be a good fit for the demographic of the center. Over the years we've gotten better at reading this. What used to be typical mall restaurants were large chains with a narrow range of price points and quality. That's now far more adaptable with a greater range of experience levels and price points. Also, we now incorporate local and regional concepts because they create strong points of differentiation.
rd+d: Who controls design decisions, you or the restaurant company?
Loch: It's a collaboration. Their design team would have someone overseeing design and construction and submitting drawings to our tenant coordination team. There's a series of reviews that occur, both design and technical. Those are generally very collaborative and it's a pretty quick process because it's important to keep things moving. The restaurants need to get their own building permit from the municipality. On top of that, we have our own sign criteria, which is generally a little stricter.