Published in Property on 14-05-2014
Johan Van Geyte
Shopping center De Commanderie, 4,000 sqm store space in Bilzen, has managed to sell or rent 86 % of its store space at its launch.
It has quite a few well-known retail brands, like Hunkemöller, Ici Paris XL, Hema, Spar and Zeeman already on board.
In order to combat rising vacancy rates, owners of commercial real estate are heavily pressured into offering significant discounts - often as high as 15 %, but sometimes even up to 50 %.
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Over the past ten years, the number of shops in Flanders and Brussels has decreased by 15 %. Strangely, the vacancy rate increased, but so too did the amount of retail space that was actually used. E-commerce is often presented as the culprit, but the story is actually much more complex than that.
The launch of Westfield on the European continent was celebrated in Paris. The shopping centre operator will have ten Unibail-Rodamco shopping centres under their responsibility, ranging from France to Sweden.