|Ph.D Student||Marinov Maria|
|Subject||Spatial Dynamics of the Retail Sector in Israel|
|Department||Department of Architecture and Town Planning||Supervisors||Professor Daniel Czamanski|
|Professor Emeritus Lucien Ben-Guigui|
This work strives to create an accurate description of the processes taking place in the Israeli retail and to unveil mechanisms underlying the observed structural and spatial patterns. We seek an ordered pattern in the distribution of retail facilities and to interpret this emergent order. To achieve this, we combine approaches and techniques stemming from a number of different schools of thought. The empirical data includes sizes and locations of modern retailers and supermarkets for a number of years. Analysis of the sizes reveals an exponential distribution, consistent across time and scale. These findings signify a presence of self-organization and self-similarity in the structure of retail sizes. In contrast, spatial distribution of retailers reveals no organized pattern on a metropolitan scale, in spite of the multiple techniques used in the analysis. The locations of modern retailers reveal a tendency to cluster together, regardless of their sizes and with no clear affinity to population or built area. The lack of spatial organization and hierarchical structure in the distribution of modern retailers reveals the need for a normative model. Optimization tests were performed to establish sizes and locations of retailers, as well as order in which they should be constructed. The results reveal that the actual sizes of modern retailers are larger than the optimized ones. It appears that central locations should be constructed before and in smaller sizes than the ones further away from the buying power. The Israeli retail sector appears to be in need of a comprehensive planning policy.