As I write this, there are no empty shops available to rent on Oxford Street . The mile-long London shopping street is quite literally full up.
It’s another powerful indicator of the retailer demand for the capital’s prime shopping pitches. Pockets of new development on Oxford Street are bringing new opportunities for brands to get a foothold but it is being snapped up as soon – and sometimes before – it actually comes onto the market.
For example, Great Portland Estates’ new development on the corner of Oxford Street and Dean Street is creating two new large-scale stores but these have been already let ahead of completion to Benetton and New Look.
Indeed, it is perhaps the eastern end of the street which is perhaps seeing the most marked benefit from the concerted level of retailer demand. Rents in this part of the street were historically half the level of those at its west end. However, the lettings at the GPE scheme have significantly closed that gap.
This improvement in the retail offer and the upturn in rents are spreading beyond the eastern end of Oxford Street spurred on by the giant Primark store just before the junction with Tottenham Court Road. A group of brands have taken new shops around Primark and the ripple effect is now spreading towards the area around CentrePoint and St Giles Circus. With Facebook due to move its huge new office HQ to Rathbone Square just around the corner from Primark, this is an area which is going places fast.
But shopaholics shouldn’t fear that there will be no room for new brands in the capital. Our latest Midsummer Retail Report has identified around 2.5m sq ft of fresh shopping space which is planned to open across London by the end of 2018 at developments such as Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross, Battersea Power Station and the extension of Westfield London at White City.
That anticipated supply is the equivalent of about 500+ new shops – which should give even the most ardent shopper plenty of scope for browsing.
Find out more about the Colliers International UK Retail team.