Flowerdown Retail Park, Weston-super-Mare (2001 to Present)

 

Most successful development situations start with a proper understanding of retailers requirements and needs. Through market knowledge we knew that B&Q were trading from a sub standard unit in Weston super mare. They also had additional pressures on their store in the town, with a forthcoming lease expiry, an open A1 retail planning consent, and a landlord who wished to redevelop their premises for a Shopping Park Style redevelopment. In addition a new Wickes was being built in a better position so they needed to acquire new space to protect their trading levels.

Therefore there were many reasons why B&Q would wish to relocate which made this town more of a priority when faced with other opportunities around the country. Once we fully understood the B&Q requirement on what was and wasn't an acceptable compromise, we identified 4 sites which after discussion with B&Q a site of circa 10 acres was identified as the preferred retailer location. The land had excellent main A road frontage, was in a central location easily accessible to the densely populated residential areas and yet still away from the areas of traffic congestion. Coterminous with agreeing to purchase the site on behalf of our client we negotiated with B&Q via an agreement for lease for a 100,000 ft.² B&Q retail warehouse together with a 20,000 ft.² garden centre and 30,000 ft.² builders yard.
 
Planning for this use was obtained at the same time that B&Q change their trading format and wished to downsize to their 55,000 ft.² mini retail warehouse format. Reacting to this in a positive fashion, planning was secured to subdivide the units and whilst a new lease was drawn up with B&Q deals were eventually agreed with Sports Direct, Aldi, Carpet Right and Comet on 15 year term certain leases. Prior to the sale of the completed investment an area to the front of the car park was identified as being suitable for POD redevelopment. Deals were successfully negotiated with Costa Coffee, and Frankie and Benny's at new record rents and construction of these units is due to commence in January 2012.
 
Our involvement in the site has lasted for over 10 years where we have taken an initial concept based on occupier demand and successfully negotiated our way through to a different scheme which has met occupiers changing demands and yet still delivered a healthy profit to the developer/landlord. What started out as a single let to a bulky goods operator has ended up with a multi-let Open A1 Retail Park with seven occupiers on good long leases with prospects for rental growth in the future.
 
For further information contact:
 

Richard Macarthur
rgm@macarthurwilson.com
 
Regulated by RICS