In 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic, the investors delivered retail parks with a total area of 62,890 sqm. Investors have adopted this recipe, also suitable during the pandemic, increasing exponentially year by year the number of retail parks and implicitly the total area of new spaces delivered in shopping centers: 92,800 sqm in 2020, 124,700 sqm in 2021, and a record area of 256,646 sqm, estimated to be given this year.
Also, the number of localities where developers open modern retail centers has doubled. At the end of this year, the Romanian market will have 48 localities where there will be a modern retail park with a similar concept, respectively an important supermarket as the main anchor and service spaces in areas such as pharmacy, clothes cleaner, pet shop, hairdresser’s services, bank, mobile phone services, flower shop, homemade and fashion stores and in some cases restaurant area and fast food.
A new concept is retail parks in new residential areas, in satellite localities near major cities, such as Lemon Retail Park, in Pipera, which is delivered this week, located in an area of new villas near Bucharest. The family market shopping centers in the Miroslava and Bucium communes near the city of Iasi have a similar concept. Among the retailers that open new stores and branches of banks in such retail parks are Mega Image, Pepco, and Banca Transilvania.
“In 2022, malls are on a recovery trend; traffic is increasing, reaching the pre-pandemic level. The current economic environment will continue to substantially impact next year on the new deliveries of retail spaces, especially for the mall segment.
The most sustainable and prosperous developments turn out to be the schemes of retail parks delivered in secondary cities, where the price of land is lower compared to the top 10 cities. These new retail parks have attracted the most successful retailers on the market, attentive to expansion and new opportunities for penetration in medium and small towns in the country“, Doinița Ilie, Retail Consultant, Fortim Trusted Advisors, member of the BNP Paribas Real Estate Alliance.
This kind of investments offers more flexibility, a short term of the construction, and a smaller initial investment for the developers.
In 2022, the key developers in the retail parks segment are Prime Kapital, NEPI.
Rockcastle, Scallier Investments, Oasis Retail Development & Consulting, Mitiska REIM, Iulius
Group, Synergy Construct, Impact Developer & Contractor, and Supernova.
In Romania, this new retail park format has grown faster as a share of the total modern commercial spaces compared to Poland. In Romania, retail parks have reached a market share of 42%, malls have decreased to 53%, shopping galleries are at 4%, and outlet centers are at only 1% at the end of the first semester of 2022. In Poland, malls are at 68% as a share of the total market, retail deposits at 19%, retail parks at 11%, and outlet stores at 2%, according to the at a Glance Poland’s Modern Retail Market H1 2022 study, by BNP Paribas Real Estate.
“In Romania, the total stock of spaces in the segment of retail parks will exceed the supply of commercial spaces located in shopping malls if developers continue on the same trend. Investors have announced projects totaling over 500,000 sqm in the next three years, most of them retail parks type“, spoke Nicolae Ciobanu, Managing Partner – Head of Advisory Fortim Trusted Advisors, member of the BNP Paribas Real Estate Alliance.
TOP OF THE CITIES THAT HAVE THE MOST RETAIL SPACES IN ROMANIA
In first place in terms of the stock of modern commercial spaces is Bucharest, second place Timisoara, third place Cluj-Napoca, third place Iasi, fourth place Constanta, and fifth place Brasov, according to the study At a Glance H1 2022 Retail Market, conducted by Fortim Trusted Advisors, member of the BNP Paribas Real Estate Alliance.
In Bucharest, modern shopping centers have a total area of 1,118,732 sqm, while in the other five major cities in the top towns, the stock varies between 131,500 and 219,500 sqm. Since last year, investors have expanded their area of interest, tracking second and third-tier cities and even smaller localities with more than 20,000 inhabitants. This trend will continue in the coming years.