Well folks, it looks like the last bastion of normalcy in downtown Honolulu is waving goodbye! The final Longs Drugs store will be closing its doors on June 10th. Apparently, this is part of a “realignment of national footprint” – or in layman’s terms, they’re cutting their losses.
Our friend Daniel Rodriguez, owner of the Taco Kabana, is feeling the heat. He’s been enjoying the convenience of Longs Drugs just across the street. Now he’s worried that the space will turn into another ghost-town retail spot, just like that old Walgreens on South Hotel Street – remember that one?
Rodriguez says, “Businesses like that will affect a small business if it’s closing around here.” And he’s not wrong! First Walgreens, now Longs Drugs – downtown Honolulu is becoming a real-life game of retail musical chairs!
On the bright side, Rodriguez has noticed a decrease in petty theft and drug activity around his business – at least during the day. But when the sun goes down, things start to get a bit sketchy. The homeless population increases, theft picks up, and even some looting occurs at night. Talk about a nightlife!
And let’s not forget the wise words of Honolulu appraiser and broker, Stephany Sofos: attracting large retailers to downtown is a challenge in itself. So what’s the solution? Maybe we should all chip in and open up a giant lemonade stand. But hey, at least we still have Taco Kabana!
#HonoluluRetailWoes #LongsDrugsClosing #DowntownStruggles
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