In the mid-1930s, Macy’s had become the ‘world’s largest store’ slogan in several promotions and advertisements. When it opened its doors to the world in 1902 November, little did the owners knew it would become a sensation within a few decades! More expansions in 1924 and 1930 led Macy’s Herald Square to grow over a million square feet across the ten shopping floors. It is now spread across an unthinkable 2.185 million square shopping world.
What Is So Special About Macy’s Herald Square Store?
The shop is the most coveted one in midtown Manhattan and one with ‘visible corners.’ At Herald Square, Macy’s still retains the ‘world’s largest store’ tag on Broadway and also on the exterior of 34th Street. Retailers refer to Herald Square store as the ‘most valuable asset.’
The land on which Macy’s has its establishment is worth something around $3 and $4 billion! One look at the conspicuous signage of the name, and anyone will understand the retail unit’s charisma. Now that there is no less than a chain of 512 department stores spread throughout the nation, Macy’s is undoubtedly a name to reckon with. So much so that retailers hope the very brand will increase its prestige by several notches.
What Developments Happened In All These Years?
To retain its legacy, Macy keeps upgrading its look timely for customers around the globe. A couple of years ago, the company announced its plan of constructing an 800-foot tall tower office just above the store. By doing so, no less than 1.5 million square foot area bearing a glass structure was added.
Going by estimates, the “already heavily-congested” zone would have been able to accommodate about 6000 office employees. Yes, this is in addition to the existing capacity. However, to make way for such increased traffic of commuters, the 34th Street subway station also required upgrades. The subway station is the third busiest in the total system and is at the store’s base.
What Problems Came Up?
Reports of the company’s uncertain future, at least from the financial standpoint and a “thorny” zoning change was already doing the rounds. Just last year, Macy’s had confirmed that the project would continue.
As a result, the retailer engaged with the local communities and people and business leaders to express concern about how the project will fare.
As fate might not always act in favor, the ‘world’s largest store’ as in the in-store shoppers would have to do everything virtually. It was that scary. That’s exactly how the COVID shut down. However, it was not easy to turn the famous Herald Square area into a so-called graveyard overnight. The region is famous for the hustle and bustle, and transforming it into a quiet place is impossible.
How Can Adversities Be Coped Up With?
Help isn’t that far if one cares to see what other nations have started doing to bring about some real noticeable changes. For the last year, the world has been battling the Covid pandemic, and thankfully, there are chances of improvement. It’s that the hope must be alive! Despite retailers reducing store hours, Macy has kept working. And they have not closed off any sales at the Herald Square. Customers (in-store traffic, that is) have no doubt increased than before, and that too for a name like Macy’s department store.
Officials from city tourism are highly optimistic. And considering a sharp decline in the infection rates and the ongoing vaccinations, we can say that the city will soon recuperate. The current estimation is that about 38 million people will visit the city. This is akin to half the number of people who came down in 2019. However, it is still an optimistic number from the pandemic time of 2020.
The company’s ‘billboard’ paints a positive image for several others, which somehow hides the reality. To raise funds required, the company had already sold off some invaluable memoirs of real estate. For example, Chicago State Square, Francisco Union Square, and Brooklyn were sold off, to name a few. And the reality is that more such closings might be on the cards. Despite all the odds, Macy’s Herald Square will continue to be the world’s largest store. Have you visited this store? Do tell us about your experience in the comments section!