Most retail landlords are considering redeveloping their properties for other uses in a further blow for the struggling UK high street.
In total, 18 per cent of landlords have already completed a re-purposing project and a further 75 per cent are considering making the move, according to a survey by estate agent Savills.
Most landlords – 85 per cent – that said they would re-purpose their property said they would convert it for residential use while 80 per cent said it would be used for health and community purposes.
The rapid growth of e-commerce and click and collect as shopping methods has led to 30 per cent of landlords – mostly shopping centre and retail park owners – to consider developing last mile logistics.
However, 90 per cent of landlords will try and revitalise the retail and leisure offer before considering alternative uses, the research, which surveyed more than 30 companies, found.
Savills head of retail investment and re-purposing Mark Garmon-Jones said: “Structural changes within the retail industry means it’s time for landlords to futureproof their schemes against uncertainty, so it’s positive to see so many of Savills clients that we are working with are already undertaking or considering a redevelopment of their scheme.
“Re-purposing doesn’t have to solely be about reducing the retail footprint, instead it is about the re-creating of scheme to provide a modern and revitalised offering that will stand the test of time.”
For example, Intu has created an independent food stall hub at its Lakeside shopping centre to provide a more diverse offering to shoppers.
Retail landlord Ellandi has turned an empty store in Southampton formerly occupied by Matalan into a flexible digital workspace.
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