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The return of the downtown office worker?

Al Urbanski
Breakfast and lunch time crowds are up in cities across the nation.

While more than half of America’s workforce continues to ply their trades at home for at least part of the week, Monday-through-Friday traffic counts in U.S. downtowns in February indicate that their office time is on the rise.

A report from Springboard, a provider of shopper traffic counting and artificial intelligence to retailers, found that retail traffic in American cities went up by 30.6% at breakfast time and 19.2%  at lunch time compared to February 2022.

The average annual increase over other parts of the day was 18.3%.

Downtown traffic across the country was 22.4% higher than it was last year, reported Springboard, which noted that crowds still remained 22.6% lower than they were in 2019, prior to the pandemic.

Results in the nation’s biggest downtown, Manhattan, were close to the national averages with a year-over-year February count that was 28.9% higher. Breakfast and lunch time tallies in New York were up by 30.4% and 25.1%, respectively.

“This demonstrates that while hybrid working is now very much established, a greater number of employees are now returning to the office,” said Diane Wehrle, Springboard’s marketing and insights d

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