Shopping Centre

This year’s Parkex saw the typical range of quality product launches and new innovation. One area of heightened focus was the relationship between parking and retail. Having been a hot topic of discussion for years, parking companies are finally turning ideas and research into enhanced technology and marketable products.

Pass the Test

Slips and trips are an important safety concern when it comes to the design and maintenance of public and commercial areas, costing UK industry in excess of £500m a year in compensation and legal fees.
And within the shopping centre sector slips and trips account for more than 75 per cent of all claims faced by malls, according to Steve Booth, director at Slip Test. “Most of these liabilities come under the category of ‘uninsurable risk’ and thus most claims are settled either directly from the service charge or from the centre itself,” Booth notes.
And he warns: “The UK is quickly following the example of the United States and is becoming increasingly litigious. Shopping centres are now facing an unprecedented increase of personal injury claims from both genuine and bogus claimants.”
Slip Test currently tests over 10 million sq ft of retail space each year, and Booth expects this to grow, particularly in the light of new legislation on corporate manslaughter which points the finger of liability firmly at companies, but also at the ‘responsible individuals’ within those companies.
“Most schemes in the UK are managed on behalf of owners by managing agents,” Booth points out. “The managing agent will appoint a centre manager to deal with the centre on a day-to-day basis. The duty of care to the public normally falls to the incumbent centre manager. This means that the centre manager and thus the managing agent can be liable for any claims for accidents such as slips and trips that occur in the centre.”
And he warns: “Each time a claim is made the cost of defending and sometimes settling a claim is coming straight off the bottom line of the managing agent’s budget. As a manager with duty of care it is the responsibility of each centre manager to ensure that flooring in public areas is safe for shoppers to use. It is also the responsibly of centre managers to limit liability both to themselves and the owner of the scheme as well as the managing agent.”
While liquid spills and dust/dirt are recognised as clear hazards, the use of inappropriate cleaning agents or methods can be equally unsafe, according to expert slip resistance testing and consultancy firm CERAM. The company has produced a free guide to the implementation of effective cleaning and maintenance regimes for slip resistant floors, which is downloadable at
The guide outlines the fundamentals of effective cleaning regimes, advises on the use of specific cleaning methods and details the correct application of different types of detergents in regular use.
“The most slip resistant surfaces can become slippery if they are not maintained appropriately,” comments Lisa Cobden, senior consultant at CERAM. “In some cases the use of incorrect cleaning materials, or ineffective maintenance regimes, has cost organisations tens of thousands of pounds, often completely unnecessarily.”
“Architects, specifiers, installers and janitorial services need information with which to properly implement appropriate cleaning and maintenance regimes for the flooring that they are responsible for,” she says.
CERAM offers both the ramp and pendulum test in their UK laboratories, as well as providing a full on-site consultancy service encompassing cleaning regimes, maintenance, integrity of substrate, wearing or weathering of flooring surfaces and trafficking patterns.

Shopping centres have to face up to the realities of carbon reduction

The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme is about to become a reality, but according to environmental experts many shopping centres have been slow to wake up to its implications.

Liverpool One creates its own biofuel from waste cooking oil in an industry first

In what is seen as a first for a retail and leisure destination in the UK, Liverpool One has started creating its own biofuel. The initiative involves Liverpool One collecting waste cooking oils from several of its many restaurants and recycling it into clean biodiesel that will run Liverpool One’s fleet of estate vehicles.

HSE launches new campaign to prevent slips and trips in the workplace

Slip, trip and fall incidents in the workplace cost 40 workers their lives last year and cost society an estimated £800m each year, according to the Health and Safety Executive.

Slip tests are a must to prevent an onslaught of litigations in the shopping centre industry

Slips and trips are an important safety concern when it comes to the design and maintenance of public and commercial areas, costing UK industry in excess of £500m a year in compensation and legal fees.

Improving the efficiency of car park ventilation systems also cuts costs, says SCS Group specialist

Fire safety and air quality are key considerations in shopping centre car park design. Lee Hewings, car park specialist at the SCS Group, explains how it is possible to cut energy costs and help the environment while achieving safe conditions, even in older car parks.

New innovations at Parkex reveal a tightening bond between parking companies and retail

Parkex, Europe’s largest dedicated parking event, took place in Earls Court at the beginning of March with some new products designed to shake up the retail sector in particular.

Irish retail sees further declines in the volume and value of sales

The Irish retail market continues to bear the brunt of the current economic downturn, according to the latest bimonthly retail bulletin from CBRE.

Burning Money

Fire safety and air quality are key considerations in shopping centre car park design. Lee Hewings, car park specialist at the SCS Group, explains how it is possible to cut energy costs and help the environment while achieving safe conditions, even in older car parks

Can retail survive with the current laws on Sunday trading?

Last month, Trafford Centre operations director Gordon McKinnon stoked the fires of controversy over Sunday trading once again. Where does the debate stand now?

New retail concept Pop Store helps kick off Whiteleys' new fashion focus

A new retail concept, which gives the old notion of pop-up stores a makeover, has provided Whiteleys with inspiration for the launch of its own fashion-led revamp.

Colliers report confirms growing divergence between primary and secondary centres

Colliers CRE’s third national retail barometer research report, which uses void rates as a key indicator, reveals there is a big and growing divergence in vacancy rates between prime and secondary shopping areas across the 15 centres in its sample.

Food Feedback: Piazza by Anthony, Corn Exchange in Leeds

Jonathan Doughty serves up his regular shopping centre foodservice review. This month he visits Piazza by Anthony in the Corn Exchange, Leeds.

Facilities management contracts are being reappraised in the light of service charge and value for money

Incentive Facilities Management hosted a round table at Capital & Counties’ Covent Garden offices, attended by a cross-section of landlords, managing agents and tenants’ representatives. The panel was asked what way is the market heading – total facilities management, single service provision or in-house?

Interserve helps Manchester Arndale live up to its reputation through its provision of TFM

At 1.4m sq ft, with a weekly footfall of 600,000, Manchester Arndale is one of the foremost retail destinations in the UK. Being slap-bang in the middle of Manchester city centre with good transport links and a unique student market, the Arndale attracts Britain’s second highest footfall after the Bullring in Birmingham.

Retailer Spotlight: Deichmann Shoes

On the back of sharply increased turnover in the UK, Deichmann Shoes has announced plans to open ten UK stores in 2010, twice the number it opened in 2009.

St Andrew's Way brings the latest fashion trends to Eldon Square

Capital Shopping Centres celebrated the opening of its new St Andrew’s Way Mall at Eldon Square in Newcastle with a series of fashion shows showcasing both new and established Eldon Square stores.

The Riding Shopping Centre in Wakefield enlists superheroes to boost half-term trade

The Ridings Shopping Centre in Wakefield enlisted a string of comic book heroes to boost trade over the Spring half-term. Spiderman, Superman, James Bond and Cinderella were among the well known superheroes, fairytale characters and heartthrobs making star appearances throughout the holiday.

Investment in retail property continues at the slowest rate for six months

The recovery in retail property investment markets continued in January, albeit at a more pedestrian rate than the closing months of 2009. IPD data shows capital values for all retail increased by 1.03 per cent in January, the slowest monthly rate of growth since August 2009.

The UK market will see more stability going forward, according to Cushman & Wakefield

Average retail property rents declined just over 8 per cent in 2009 according to Cushman & Wakefield. But the agent is forecasting no further falls for 2010.