The Impact of Big-Box Development on Toronto's Retail Structure
By Dr. Ken Jones and Dr. Michael Doucet
This report examines the impact of big-box retailing on the retail structure of the Toronto area. The most significant structural change to the urban retail economy in recent years has been the introduction of a variety of new retail formats - normally called 'big-boxes' or 'category killers', and often grouped together in new aggregations known as 'power centres/power nodes'. These large-scale retail operations incorporate various information technologies into fundamental areas of retail management such as logistics, inventory control, ordering, category management, product scanning, relational marketing and advertising. The integration and application of these technologies permit big-box retail outlets to generate lower product prices and margins, while still maintaining an acceptable level of profit. These retail formats have introduced a new form of competition to almost every retail category.