Magnolia Chamber launches retail survey on Village shopping

Through the end of August, community members in Magnolia will have the chance to weigh in on what they think are the plusses and pitfalls of retail in Magnolia Village.

Greg Carnese, executive director of the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce, said as of Saturday they had received approximately 50 responses for a new survey on business in the Village, but said he would be “ecstatic” to get 400 to 500 by the end of the month.

“We want to find out, are people shopping in Magnolia?” he said. “If they’re not shopping in Magnolia, where are they shopping? Why are they going elsewhere to do their shopping? Are there things not available here that force people to go to another neighborhood?”

The survey is part of a larger effort from the Chamber to revitalize the commercial district in Magnolia. Both a branding consultant and a retail consultant have been hired, with the former helping to brand Magnolia as a destination for shoppers. The latter has been working with building and property managers and owners.

Addressing vacancies has been a major issue for local stakeholders, along with increasing the mix of businesses in the neighborhood.

“If we address the vacancies, if we increase the business mix, if we get these buildings full, then everything gets better,” Carnese said.

But as those efforts continue, the survey is a chance to pinpoint the most pressing issues for local consumers when it comes to Village businesses.

“People in Magnolia care very much about their neighborhood. They care very much that the businesses down here are successful. When we have had open houses, we get 100-plus people, and they ask great questions. They want to be involved. They want to see this community be successful. They want to see their friends and neighbors be successful.”

To take the survey, go to The Chamber will also have paper copies of the survey at Magnolia Summerfest on Aug. 5-7, and the Magnolia Village Car Show on Aug. 13, along with the weekly Farmers Market (33rd Avenue West and West McGraw Street) on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to

2 p.m. through the end of the month.

Once the survey closes, the consultants will gather the data and format it for public consumption. Carnese said there will be a town hall meeting on the issues facing Village retail sometime in mid-September.

For more information on the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce, visit