Belfast’s Arthur Street sees increase in demand
16 January 2012
Anne-Marie Lonergan, Director at Savills Belfast commented
“In terms of commercial property, Arthur Street is increasingly becoming a popular location for quality retailers. Before the development of Victoria Square, there was little demand for this area, and it was only after the demise of Habitat that Avoca entered into the NI market and secured its premises. Through the establishment of Victoria Square as the main retail development in the city, retailers who are typically high street brands like Jack Wills and Le Creuset have taken advantage of the increase in footfall around the Arthur Street and Victoria Square area and opened their first outlets in NI. Other retailers who have done the same are Pandora and Hotel Chocolat who have opened on William Street South, and White Stuff on Cornmarket - its no coincidence that 62% of all premium brands in Belfast are located within the scheme.
The retail mix of the street with a bar at Vaudeville, restaurant at Avoca, and number of independent coffee shops provides it with a vibrant character during the shopping day which transforms in the evening to supply the night time economy. In addition, there is an attractive streetscape, and some retailers prefer to have a high street presence as they don’t incur a service charge or a minimal one if they do. One of the drawbacks however is that with separate ownerships of adjacent buildings, there is nothing to stop a competitor opening adjacent to them, whereas in a shopping centre, the Landlord will adhere to a tenant mix policy which makes business sense for tenants.”