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10m sq ft of malls go missing

Published:  23 June, 2016

Shopping centre plans ditched as UK retailing scene reshapes

More than 10m sq ft of shopping centre developments planned for construction during the next five years are unlikely to be built as the UK retailing scene continues to reshape in the face of curtailed retailer expansion, online retailing and lower rents according to Colliers International’s latest Midsummer Retail Report.

The agent has identified a raft of projects that either have planning consent or are in the system which are unviable. Colliers’ head of UK retail, Mark Phillipson, said: “On the face of it, the shopping centre development pipeline is now running at levels not seen since the recession, but the reality is that many schemes will not be viable. As the market stands, the cost of building a centre would – in many instances – be more than its end value.

“While this is a blow to the promoters of these schemes, the positive aspect is that it shows how the market is responding to ‘right-size’ the development pipeline. Shopping centre schemes are progressing but they are focused on locations with wide catchment areas and strong demographics. There is also a growing trend to extend existing successful centres. The 800,000-sq ft extension to Westfield London will make it the largest shopping centre in Europe.”