The towns and cities in the post-socialistic countries witness the construction of large-scale commercial centers near busy transportation roads. Especially in small or medium-sized towns, the new commercial centers create an alternative focus of activities in relation to the traditional historic center. The town center with a square and small-scale shops do not serve for everyday use as they did in the past. This paper presents the results of the first part of a project looking at the people’s use of commercial services in the traditional shops in historic parts of towns and new shopping centers near the highways. In this paper, we make our observations on a case study - Pelhrimov - a 16-thousand inhabitant town in the Czech Republic. We observe the use of the historic square and the commercial centers and make interviews with the town´s inhabitants about their commercial habits and the use of space. The first findings allow us to describe the people’s understanding of the public space of the town, the values that they assign to the two commercial places and the spatial attributes that the commercial places represent.