Thursday 4 August 2011

World's first pop-up mall coming to London

Sixty  shipping containers are to be transformed into the world's first pop-up shopping mall -- set to open its doors in Shoreditch, East London.
Boxpark is going to open in October -- two months later than planned -- in a 4.7 hectare site called The Goodsyard -- a former railway yard, which has been derelict for more than 40 years.
Founder and managing director  of the venture is Roger Wade -- creator of the fashion brand  Boxfresh. He says: "The container is the ultimate in industrial design but why not use it in a retail perspective."
Built next to the new  Shoreditch High Street train station, Boxpark will see 60 customised containers lifted onto the site. Forty will made up the ground floor of the mall, and upstairs will be a further 20 units housing cafes and art galleries. The retailers will not be limited to fashion with Wade stating that they contacting "any retailer who we think are doing something a little different".
With all the flexibility of 1 or 5 year leases, and based on the US pop-up shop idea*, the venture will provide a means of allowing more innovation in retail

* US pop-up shop: Most retail stores would consider staying in business for just a few days a total failure. But a growing number of merchants are opening overnight shops that appear and disappear within the blink of an eye.
These "pop-up shops" essentially are temporary boutiques that pop-up in random locations for a couple days to a week and offer exclusive items. The quickie format originated in New York City but is rapidly spreading across the US, filling in empty spaces abandoned by out-of-business retailers. Some pop-ups are run by large retailers but a new trend is towards pop-ups fronted by small boutiques with a strong online presence. Minimal storage costs and cut-rate rents allow retailers to offer high savings, although the selection is fairly limited. Shoppers like the bargains but also appreciate the unique products on offer.

If the trend continues, it could reshape the US retail landscape, diminishing the power of commercial landlords and making it easier for large merchants to test new locations and products with little commitment. It also allows smaller companies to quickly run through new stock without the expense of storage or hiring permanent employees.
A break-through lesson for UK landlords and Local Government?

No comments: