St Enoch Square

Two key retail projects are moving ahead in Glasgow city centre, as the council fights back against the profusion of developments in Scotland's central belt. Ivanhoe Cambridge's plans to upgrade and expand the St Enoch Centre into a 1.3m-sq ft retail destination have been given the go-ahead by the planning department. And Henderson Global Investors and Land Securities have submitted preliminary proposals for a major expansion to the Buchanan Galleries shopping centre that could take it over a million sq ft.

Westfield has sold a 50 per cent interest in the Merry Hill shopping centre and surrounding development land to Queensland Investment Corporation for £524m. The company will continue to act as property, leasing and development manager.

The latest reader poll on [] was: "Are you concerned about the amount of new floorspace overhanging the market?" 66 per cent said "yes" and 34 per cent said "no"

Kingston-upon-Hull City Council has granted planning permission for Henderson Global Investors and Invista's proposed refurbishment and extension of Hull's Princes Quay shopping centre. The Quay West development will increase current floor space by more than 500,000 sq ft, to create a new 725,000-sq ft retail destination.

Six new retailers have signed up for Lend Lease's 365,000-sq ft extension to the Golden Square shopping centre in Warrington, which is on schedule for completion in March 2007.

Warner Estate and Bank of Scotland's Agora shopping centre fund has kickstarted the £40m extension to the Market Place shopping centre in Bolton with a strong list of pre-lets including H&M, Zara, Warehouse, Lush, Principles, Office, Joy, Carphone Warehouse and Starbucks.

First Secretary of State, Ruth Kelly, has decided not to call in CSC and LaSalle Investment Management's planning application for the £300m redevelopment and extension of the Westgate centre in Oxford. Oxford City Council will now be responsible for issuing final planning permission for the scheme.

River Island, Henderson Jewellers and Zumo are the latest three retailers to sign up for London & Regional Properties' 350,000-sq ft Antonine Centre in Cumbernauld, which opens on 4 May 2007. And lettings to Autonomy, Subway and Birthdays are in solicitors' hands.

Silverburn will be the year's biggest opening

Research by Donaldsons concludes that just under 4 million sq ft of new shopping centre space will be delivered in 2007. This is the highest level of completions since 2003, and it comes at a time when retailers are under pressure - already 600 units have come back to the market since Christmas with the collapse of the Card Warehouse and Music Zone chains into administration.

== Research highlights the changing face of shopping malls ==

New Year - new resolutions, and I think it is fair to say a new competitive threat for many high street foodservice operations.

A quick glance at our data page (p19) will show just how confusing Christmas 2006 was. Pedestrian flow was down but overall sales were up.

I have had my most relaxed Christmas period ever. Instead of trying to fit everything in, I have just sat back and observed. No rushing around families, no rushing to fit loads of extra work in, no fighting in the sales, no nothing, except observing.

Global lifestyle retailer Esprit has come a long way since its humble beginnings in 1968 when San Francisco couple Susie and Doug Tompkins were selling clothes out the back of their station wagon.

The SCEPTRE Awards, rewarding the best practice and the best people in the UK and Ireland shopping centre industry, are back - and they're bigger and better than ever.

The BCSC's shopping centre management conference is now a firm fixture on the annual conference and exhibitions circuit, and next month it returns to Edinburgh's International Convention Centre, scene of last year's highly successful event.

There's probably quite a few retail tenants who'd love to see their landlord marooned in a liferaft in a howling storm just off the coast of Antarctica. But only one has actually found himself in that situation. Steve Boultbee Brooks, managing director of the shopping centre specialist Boultbee and its management subsidiary EFM, is one of this country's leading polar explorers in his spare time.

The Covent Garden Market control room, installed by G1

Licensing for public space surveillance CCTV operators came into force on 20 March 2006, which means it is now illegal for contracted staff to work without a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence. The ins and outs of who does and who doesn't need a licence have been an issue this year within the security industry.

New innovations in CCTV systems mean security staff are able to see even more from their shopping centre control rooms.

New innovations in CCTV systems mean security staff are able to see even more from their shopping centre control rooms.

Despite having very little disposable income of their own, the influence children have on their parents' shopping habits means the under-14 consumer group is vital to a shopping centre's marketing strategy.

As the retailers' trading statements begin to roll in, industry analysts are picking over the bones of Christmas 2006. Overall sales were up but it is becoming clear that the benefits were not evenly spread and there have been both winners and losers within the retail sector.

== ? Drake Circus, Plymouth ==

== ? Andover ==

UK consumers defied the prophets of doom to give retailers a better-than-expected Christmas, according to the latest data from the British Retail Consortium(BRC) and KPMG. Overall UK retail sales were up 2.5 per cent compared with December 2005.

According to Savills' research, the final quarter of 2006 was the strongest of the year for shopping centre investment turnover, with £2.6bn of shopping centres changing hands. This brought the total annual turnover to £7bn, down marginally on 2005.

The latest Retail FootFall Index (RFI) figures from FootFall back up what many had already suspected - that Christmas 2006 was a disappointment for the retail sector. Although the RFI recorded a healthy 20.7 per cent increase in shopper numbers from November to December, this did little to improve the overall drop in footfall levels compared to 2005. This gap has been steadily widening throughout the year.


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