What does “lock-down” mean for Placemaking?

For most industries, “lock-down” means, well… “lock-down”.

In the Placemaking world, it isn’t that simple. A lot of the UK’s shopping centres have supermarket anchors, pharmacies, and “essential” stores that need to remain open as ‘usual’.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been speaking to centre management teams overseeing a real variety of assets from community to town centre, OOT retail parks to destination, mixed use to trophy assets and so on. The key challenges have all been the same; how do we “lock-down” our centres whilst remaining partially open, safely?

Challenges:

  • What measures need to be put in place to ensure the centre is operated safely – what changes need to be made with existing rosters for duty management?
  • Tenants that have closed want to see savings on service charge budget but centres are remaining open for essential businesses. How can shopping centres support both groups of occupiers?
  • How do we ensure absolute safety of all of our customers?
  • What do centres need to facilitate to support occupier staff and their safety?
  • and our staff, customers and tenants are safe?
  • How do we implement social distancing in centres and, in operational units?

It has been, and continues to be, a very challenging period for shopping centres. The feedback I’ve received in overcoming said challenges is working together. All stakeholders, whether they are occupiers, suppliers, contracts, local community, customers, staff, have joined together to create a harmonious, safe and secure shopping experience for all involved.

Good luck for the rest of the uncertain period to everyone!

I can’t wait to start “revenge shopping” when this is all over!

Please feel free to get in touch with anticipated challenges for the future and pose any questions for discussion/advice that we can share with our wider network.

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