The UK shopping centre development boom shows distinct signs of cooling off, according to research released by Colliers CRE at the BCSC conference. The agent calculates that shopping centre floorspace in the development pipeline for the next five years has fallen by 15 per cent, or 8.4 million sq ft, as slackening retailer demand and a tougher funding climate force developers to reconsider their plans.
The East Midlands Designer Outlet, run by McArthurGlen, has revealed plans to build a wind turbine on site to maximise its use of renewable energy, reducing the size of its carbon footprint by 50 per cent. If approved the 95 metre tall wind turbine could save 1,600 tonnes of carbon emissions each year, making the scheme the first shopping centre in the UK to generate a significant amount of its own sustainable green energy.
Birmingham City Council has entered into a development agreement with the Birmingham Alliance to deliver the 2 million-sq ft Martineau Galleries project, its follow-up to the Bullring in Birmingham City Centre. When completed, Martineau Galleries will deliver 915,000 sq ft of retail, along with significant office, leisure and residential space stretching across the entire 14-acre site.
Joe O'Reilly's Castlethorn has unveiled plans for a second phase of development at Dundrum Town Centre, its award-winning mall to the south of Dublin city centre.
Thornfield Properties has secured planning permission for an enlarged version of its £330m mixed-use scheme in Bury town centre, known as The Rock.
Shopping centres across the UK could be affected by Home Office claims that 5,000 illegal immigrants were mistakenly cleared to work as security staff.
A Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year is something we all wish for at this time of year, but statistics prove it's going to be anything but. False alarms triggered by stray festive trimmings placed too close to sensitive security detectors are going to test the patience of over-stretched and under-resourced police officers.
We have long been saying that foodservice can be leisure in its own right. While people are sceptical about this in the UK, they are much less so in Europe, and EPD has created a fabulous new facility in the centre of Prague, which opened its doors to the public at 10.00pm on Thursday 23 October. The centre combines an old barracks and stables building, retaining original facades, with a strikingly modern interior set over five floors.
The BCSC's annual shindig on the banks of the Tyne was bigger than ever with 3,300 delegates in attendance. Fine weather always helps, but Newcastle and Gateshead proved to be an attractive conference venue.
Mobile phone operator 3 will shortly begin the roll out of a newly designed store that aims to attract female shoppers and to appeal to shopping centre managers as well.
There are now less than six months to go until the official deadline of 6 April 2008 when Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are required on the sale or letting of all commercial buildings of more than 10,000 sq m. From July 2008 EPCs will be needed for all buildings over 2,500 sq m and from 1 October 2008 all commercial property will require an EPC. From a property investor's perspective the timing could not be worse as we all try to get to grips with the recent slowdown in the market.
KLM managing director Howard Morgan welcomed the expert panel, and began by asking: "Is property management more important in mixed-use projects than in single-use schemes?"
Glasgow has become one of the UK's hotbeds of retail development. Ranked by Experian as the UK's number two retail destination, the city centre faces competition from new developments in surrounding towns. But the council is fighting back by permitting large-scale extensions to many of its existing facilities.
Manchester city centre has benefited from huge investment over recent years with the city consistently appearing in the top three destinations within the UK retail hierarchy.
Ensuring you have a good communications system in your shopping centre is important. If retailers, security officers and centre management remain in constant contact, then incidents such as shoplifting, lost children or violence can be dealt with quickly and efficiently, without delay.
Town centre-wide security communications systems are a common tool for combating crime in the UK, enabling retailers, shopping centre owners and the police to work side by side towards a common goal.
The term 'facilities management' or FM is widely used and often misused. In simple terms it can best be summarised as providing and maintaining the working environment - or put another way, the total management, delivery and budget-holding for all non-core services.
Shopping centres across the UK are reaping the benefits of transferring to an integrated services provider.
LVAM has appointed HOWARD MEANEY as the new head of property investment. He will manage the new LV= UK property fund as well as the group's other property investments, which currently total £800m in assets. He joins from Cushman & Wakefield, where he was a partner in the property investment management team.
Regeneration projects in Hebden Bridge, Luton and Redruth have won the BCSC's Gold Standard awards for Town Centre Environment. The awards, which were presented at the Gateshead conference, recognise work undertaken in towns and cities across the UK to improve the urban environment and encourage retail investment.
Midsummer Place in Milton Keynes and thecentre:mk joined forces on October 12 and 13 to host and part fund a massive free public event on a scale never seen in the town before. The 'Light Fantastic' event drove a significant increase in footfall with the busiest Friday and Saturday recorded in 2007 to date.
BCSC marked the opening off its 2007 conference and retail showcase in Gateshead by presenting cheques for £12,500 each to two charities. Representatives from WaterAid and CLIC Sargent were both presented cheques by Alan Shearer, the former England and Newcastle football star, and BCSC chief executive Michael Green.
UK shopping centres were at the forefront when the Maxi Marketing Awards were handed out at the ICSC's recently-held fall convention in New Orleans. The international Maxi Awards recognise the best marketing campaigns from around the world, and five British shopping centres came home bearing trophies.
Autumn 2007 will go down in history as the time when Ireland's shopping centre development boom finally came to fruition.
Zara has been confirmed for the new Phase II extension in the Pavilions shopping centre, Swords, which is now 75 per cent let. The Spanish fashion brand is to occupy approximately 1,400 sq m of space over two levels.
Global luggage brand Antler and fashion footwear label Staccato are among the first in a series of new store openings at the 16,000- sq ft additional phase of outlet shopping at the Junction One development, Antrim. Both stores have just opened for business alongside locally based fashion chain Clockwork Orange and surf brand Billabong.
The third and final phase of Drogheda Retail Park has received planning permission from Meath county council.
Green Property, the company that owns the Blanchardstown Centre in north-west Dublin, is actively planning a major extension of the centre.
Time is running out for the Westfield Group to make good on its promise to resubmit plans for the expansion of the Sprucefield complex in the outskirts of Belfast.
Athlone Towncentre, the biggest centre to complete in Ireland this year, was about to open just as Shopping Centre Ireland went to press.
Shaws Department Stores has acquired a new freehold in the Laurence Town Centre development in Drogheda. The independent will occupy approximately 3,344 sq m and was due to open on October 25.
The Outlet at Bridgewater Park in Banbridge, Northern Ireland, has signed Italian brand Almaplena for its first ever store in Ireland. The exclusive Italian fashion accessories brand, which offers everything from costume jewellery to hair accessories, has taken an 807 sq ft unit at The Outlet.
Mullingar, Co Westmeath, is due to get a major new scheme, with a large element of retail, that will rival the Athlone Town Centre.
Hugh Black has been appointed as the new centre manager of Belfast's Victoria Square shopping centre. Managing agents Savills HOK made the new appointment for the landmark shopping and leisure venue which will open on the 6 March 2008. Hugh moves from the designer sales outlet, Junction One, in Antrim.
The Northside shopping centre in Dublin, opened in 1970, will be demolished as part of a €1bn plan to create an ambitious Northside Town Centre.
Dunnes Stores and Tesco are battling it out for pole position in the new shopping centre being planned for Fermoy, Co Cork.
Opinions in the retail development sector about any possible credit crunch and its effect on future mall projects are surprisingly sanguine, with few expectations of retail property values being scaled back. During 2007, houses prices in Ireland fell by 15 per cent, but this decline hasn't been mirrored in retail property values. Neither does the decline in house values appear to have had much impact on consumer spending.
This autumn has seen numerous new shopping centre openings around Ireland and that's in addition to the massive Athlone Towncentre. Two other high profile openings have been MacDonagh Junction in Kilkenny and the Bridgewater centre in Arklow, Co Wicklow.
Brown Thomas is the name in luxury goods retailing in Ireland, with its main store in Dublin's Grafton Street and regional outlets in Cork, Galway and Limerick, all renowned for the superior quality of their customer service. Despite growing competition from the likes of Harvey Nichols in the Dundrum Town Centre, Brown Thomas keeps piling on the profits.
Ireland has a powerful new force in retail property development called Chartered Land, the brainchild of Joe O'Reilly, the man behind the creation of Dundrum Town Centre, one of the most successful recent retail developments in the country.
The Pizzaro consortium has submitted a new planning application for the €2bn Bray Town Centre scheme.
If all the plans being assembled for the O'Connell Street and Henry Street areas of north central Dublin city come to pass, in 10 years time the area will be scarcely recognisable from how it looks today.
Planning objections are holding up work on the planned new €280m Destination Waterford development in the heart of city. But now there are hopes that approval for the scheme will come through shortly from An Bord Pleanala, enabling construction to start early in the new year. Similar delays are affecting an equally ambitious Parker Green International scheme on the outskirts of Waterford.
The most recent pedestrian counts on Dublin's prime shopping streets confirm that the Irish retail sector continues to perform well, with a year-on-year increase in footfall of almost 26 per cent on Henry Street and a remarkable 44 per cent recorded on Grafton Street in the third quarter of this year, according to CBRE.
The police had to be called after shoppers at Junction One's grand opening of fashion store Clockwork Orange got out of hand. Over 5,000 customers queued to get their hands on discounted designer brands at the fashion outlet in Antrim, and one man was arrested for disorderly behaviour.
World-renowned architects Daniel Liebeskind and Lord Foster have unveiled schemes on the banks of the Liffey within weeks of each other.
Multi Development's Victoria Square in Belfast is using Fashionweek, Belfast's premiere catwalk event, to provide shoppers with a sneak preview of the top brands on offer when the mall opens in March 2008.