It feels like a huge year ahead for the #highstreet…
🤔 …what do you think…?
From a #TheVacantShopsAcademy perspective it’s one we very much hope will see more places – councils or BIDs where there is one or a combination of the two – recognising just how much difference they can make in tackling vacancy, prioritising the issue, and securing the capacity and resources it needs.
They’ll find much in their favour.
- We know that, by running ‘audit, engage’ and working with #property agents, landlords, businesses and community, empty shops numbers can be brought down;
🎨 with arts & crafts, creative, culture, community, leisure, education, health & wellbeing we’ve now a much wider range of options alongside #retail, #hospitality & services to look to, and an increasing number of examples to show how;
- more and more places are running impactful grant funding schemes to help overcome barriers to getting empty units back into use, so there’s good case study material to draw on;
🛍️ there’s a lengthening list of national brands with requirements lists and target locations looking to open extra stores and venues along with incoming new #indie occupiers which you can reach out to;
- the government’s High Street Rental Auctions power should launch this year giving places a potential extra tool in the toolkit against the trickier empties, and the consultation on ways to reduce business rates tax evasion & avoidance may deliver helpful adjustments too.
📉 Of course we’re still in challenging times but I’d say to places – even those with headline vacancy rates in the mid-high teens and low twenty percents – we know how to do this.