It’s the death of another retail vendor in downtown. Smart Set at Portage Place will be closing up shop on January 27th.

Yes they are having a sale. No it’s not anything different than any other location. They don’t have any new merchandise in the store.

This announcement came out just before released the New Retail Strategy outlining what Winnipeg should do regarding retail in the core.

A consulting firm – which is deemed a leader in North American downtown development strategies, concluded that downtown should really focus on “cheap-chic” fashion stores. Well I mean other than Sirens, I really thought Smart Set met that description.

The continuous closure of stores downtown makes it very frustrating for a person who lives and works downtown and doesn’t have a vehicle. I thought I could make it without a car, with the lack of car share, the high cost of short distance transit or all day transit hopping and our downtown missing some key necessities,  I had to finally cave in.

In my opinion I think that if we stopped begging retailers to come downtown and focus more on why no one wants to come downtown regardless of retail opportunities, then maybe the stores will come on their own. Why would I know anything though – let’s pay people who live in big house in the suburbs to tell us what we need!

I wonder what will be taking Smart Set’s spot? Maybe Esprit? Sigh, a girl can dream.

Image smart set facebook app Originally uploaded by Kate Raynes-Goldie