Saturday, 1 August 2009

Cheapside strategy (2)

Out of all the various plans and trends, it is the city's Cheapside initiative that I am most hopeful about. This is, essentially, the plan to build a shopping centre next to st Paul's on Cheapside, along with a load of other new retail space, and return that street to a 7 day shopping area. I did have a few questions about it, so I emailed the corporation. After a long while, they got back to me - and kind of answered. See below...

"1. For the retail units, particularly in One New Change, is there a general policy or idea of what types of shop will inhabit these?

Land Securities are negotiating with a number of large multiple retailers at the moment and we hope to have an announcement soon in terms of which retailers have signed up to One New Change. I can confirm that Land Securities have been selective in their retail choice, focusing on more aspirational retail as opposed to general retail. The aim is to complement the offer at Royal Exchange.

2. Weekend Opening?

The Cheapside Initiative is very much working towards a marketing and promotional campaign to support weekend trade. Working very much in partnership with our developers, we hope to influence a step change in peoples perceptions of the city as very much a Monday - Friday destination. Land Securities have agreed with One New Change and Tenants based in 1 Wood Street that they will open at the weekend from November 2010. With the critical mass being centred around One New Change, we hope this will be a positive step in encouraging other retailers along Cheapside and Bow Lane to consider weekend trade.

3. Are Paternoster Square and Bow Lane part of the area strategy.

Paternoster Square, Bow Land and Royal Exchange are all part of the overall vision for what the Cheapside Initiative is working towards achieving and this will complement the activities and commitments defined within the Cheapside Area Strategy.

4. Festival and Events

The Cheapside Initiative has a number of activities planned for the year which are outlined in the attached brochure. We also have a dedicated website that will notify you of upcoming events not just for Cheapside but the surrounding are -"

So, they're going for a more upmarket theme, which is understandable for the City. Looks like they're just trying to persuade shops to open on weekends, hopefully shops will give a go - I do believe that its a chicken / egg situation, and if you build it, they will come. Well, enough mixing metaphors.

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