A lack of new retail spaces, high construction costs, and competition for what is available are challenging retailers.

Rick Scardino, Principal and Director of Retail, Lee & Associates of Illinois, tells GlobeSt.com he is seeing tenants renew versus relocate due to those factors as well as landlords' desire to work with high-quality, existing tenants instead of assuming replacement costs.

"We recently had a long-term tenant agree to a substantial $12 per-square-foot rent increase on a five-year renewal, which really is a sign of the times," Scardino said.

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