Industry comment, updates and news from the Websters team.

Mall Development Falls to Early 1990s Levels

Thursday, September 15th, 2011 in Commercial, Landlord, Managing Agent, News

The rate of shopping centre construction activity has fallen to similar levels seen during the early 1900s recession, limiting opportunities for retailers to expand, according to the latest research from CB Richard Ellis, reported in Shopping Centre.

Shopping Centre development has fallen to less than 25 percent of levels recorded in the first half of 2007, immediately before the onset of the credit crisis, and continues to contract in Great Britain with new completions set to provide less than 3m sq ft of space in 2011. More than half the total of new shopping centre space completed this year is accounted for by Westfield Stratford.

However, unlike the early 1990s recession when new scheme proposals and consent levels declined sharply, the overall development pipeline has remained relatively stable. The decline continues to be more to do with nominal delays that schemes being scrapped altogether, albeit “distressed” schemes – those where developers are in administration or cannot progress schemes for financing reasons – have inevitably grown in number.

Due to the length of time it takes to get planning consents and the cost of holding land for development, it is clear that some shopping centre schemes will inevitably be cancelled resulting in further pipeline contraction. CBRE expect the current pipeline total of around 60m sq ft to fall to about 40m sq ft over the next three years.

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