High Street Rental Auctions update, May 2024…

A useful addition to the tackling #highstreet vacancy toolkit or unnecessary and unworkable.

⚖️ The incoming High Street Rental Auctions power for local councils has certainly divided opinion amongst #property and #placemaking colleagues.

🤔 What do you think…?

This is how the update this week read:

“New powers for communities to regenerate high streets and fill empty shops will be in force by the summer, the government has announced.”

“Where a high street shop has been empty for over a year, High Street Rental Auctions will allow local leaders to step in and auction off a rental lease for up to five years. Auctions will take place with no reserve price, giving local businesses and community groups the opportunity to occupy space on the high street at a competitive market rate.”

🏢 It’s being welcomed by places that are trying to get long-time empty units back into play, and feel frustrated by efforts to connect and engage with landlords. But opposed by those who say that it’s misunderstood the reasons for vacancy.

For me, I still favour the positive ‘audit, engage, encourage, promote’ approach we’re working with town and city centres on thru #TheVacantShopsAcademy, and believe that in the vast majority of cases that’ll get the job done. Thinking back over 11 years of doing this tho there are some units we didn’t win, and maybe having this power in reserve might have done the trick.

We’ll see.

It’d be great to get your take on it…

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