A new hard-hitting report has been proposed which introduces a radical new model that will inevitably help get investment back into Britain’s high streets.
The Town Centre Investment Zones report was launched by a collection of property industry experts, Peter Brett Associates with Bond Dickinson and Citi Centric. It demonstrated how asset management could be the key to much-needed investment for local authorities and communities to transform their areas.
Two of the biggest areas that contributed to the high street’s inability to adapt to change, was poor asset management and fragmented ownership. To test the water, as pilot studies, the group used three town centres in order to show that by using the structuring approach to high street offerings, investment attraction and fundamental change will follow.
What was proposed was Town Centre Investment Management (TCIM), which involves pooling a critical mass of property assets into an investment vehicle and in turn, will allow assets to managed and curated, thus rejuvenating the high street.
Chairman of the Fragmented Ownership Group, Liz Peace, commented: “Many town centres are currently focused on an outmoded retail that needs substantial structural change. Resurrecting their fortunes will not be achieved simply by the superficial and largely cosmetic measures that have so far been applied. This new and more fundamental approach, using proper asset management techniques, offers us the best and maybe the only, hope of making lasting and beneficial change.”
With the new model, existing stock is able to adapt to the various challenges that face the high street, such as consumer demands and behaviour, as well as the changing retail landscape. Long-term it will help local authorities to significantly transform and future-proof their high streets, which will give a better consumer offering that may include housing and leisure space.
Investors are attracted to this TCIM model as it creates new opportunities like scale and growth potential. Retail is already seen as an attractive investment due to its long-term prospects.
John Parmiter, consultant at Peter Brett Associates, added: “This is a very significant step on a journey towards real structural change in our city and town centres. Since the launch of our Thought Leadership initiative we have been very encouraged by the support for the TCIM approach from the investors, local authorities and other stakeholders that we have engaged with.”
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