When you’re a design aficionado like Target Corp., no detail is too small.


That’s especially true for Target’s new CityTarget store in Chicago, set to officially open on July 29.

The company took great care to preserve the original look of the 19th century building on State and Madison Streets on the outside while designing a sleek, modern look on the inside.

In one subtle respect, the store represents a huge departure from the other 1,700 Target locations across the country. For the first time, shoppers will hear music piped through the store’s speakers.

“It’s something we’re testing,” said Mark Schindele, Target’s senior vice president for merchandising operations, who’s overseeing the CityTarget rollout. “We think our urban guests will like it.”

I must confess I never noticed music, or rather the lack of it, while shopping at a Target store. I’m just as likely to purchase toilet paper and cat food in silence as listening to “Call Me Maybe.”

Target officials certainly think music matters.

“Part of Target’s brand positioning is having a quick, easy, distraction free shopping experience so we have wide aisles, bright lights, lots of space” in regular Target stores, Schindele said. “We have a peaceful shopping experience. There is a thought that music will interfere with that.”

But when you live and work in chaotic downtown Chicago, noise is a given. Things also move faster in the big city so Target wanted to put some “sizzle in CityTargets,” Schindele said.

“Target wants to capture the [spirit] of the surrounding environment,” said Amy Koo, an analyst with Kantar Retail consulting firm outside of Boston.

So perhaps some timely music will help motivate the urban shopper to purchase designer clothing to complement that toilet paper and cat food.

May I suggest “Zoot Suit Riot? “These Boots Are Made for Walking?” “The Thong Song?”

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