110 mn sft of retail space; developers feel the heat

By December 2008, over 110 million square feet of space is going to become available across the country for the organised retail industry, according to findings of a research report posted earlier. The retail boom is spreading to Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities and 361 projects are under way. Of this, 227 are in the top seven cities and the rest in Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities. Besides, 35 hypermarkets, 325 large department stores and over 10,000 outlets are also under development.

The biggest of the upcoming malls “Citi Center” in Noida will have 5 million square feet of space, while eastern suburbs of Mumbai will have three malls, each with more than 1 million square feet of space.

As supply grows faster than demand for retail space, malls particularly in north India are finding it difficult to find buyers, leading to surplus space being offered to offices, reports Business Standard.
“When a mall offers space to an office, it is a sign of sickness,” said Pranay Vakil, chairman, Knight Frank India, a real estate consultant. “Malls in India must also start experimenting. Without innovation, it will be difficult for many large malls to survive,” he said. “The large amount of existing retail space and the quantum of mall space lined up in Gurgaon has been a reason for concern and debate for some time now,” says a recent Knight Frank report.

Orchid Plaza, Central Plaza , Orchid Agora and Time Towers in Gurgaon are a few of the examples of the retail projects having been converted into mixed use development.

A mall in Mumbai, also housing a multiplex in the premises, was recently revived by tweaking exit way of its escalators for multiplex audience, resulting in more foot print for shop owners in the mall.

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