Springboard’s annual review looked back at the performance of retail throughout 2021, encompassing key trends in pedestrian traffic, consumer confidence and online shopping as we emerged out of the pandemic. 

Diane Wehrle, Marketing & Insights Director, revisited key pedestrian traffic insights and the many factors which impacted recovery across US retail destinations including lockdowns, restrictions and the Omicron variant towards the end of the year.

Diane Wehrle
Marketing & Insights Director. Springboard

Diane is regarded as one of the leading experts on retail and retail destinations, with unparalleled knowledge and expertise in understanding current and emerging retail issues and consumer trends. Diane is a regular commentator on the performance of retail for national broadcast and print media, appearing regularly on BBC, ITV, Sky News and CNBC and her opinion is often quoted in the UK’s national and regional press.

Diane has 30 years’ experience in retail, and is a founding director of Springboard which was established in 2002. Diane leads all of Springboard’s insights, and authors its regular commentaries, articles, reviews, and topical reports. She specialises in delivering intelligence and insights on both current retail performance and long term retail trends to retailers, hospitality occupiers, landlords, investors and place managers.

Michael Edwards
President & CEO, Chicago Loop Alliance

Michael Edwards is the President & CEO of Chicago Loop Alliance. Since joining Chicago Loop Alliance in 2012, Michael —an economic development expert—has been guiding efforts in promoting a high-performing urban experience that attracts people and investment to the Loop.

Michael’s executive experience includes leading the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, the Downtown Spokane Partnership and was formerly a Principal at The Saratoga Associates, a urban planning consulting firm. Edwards is a recognized expert in downtown management and frequently speaks internationally on key downtown opportunities and challenges.