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Bluewater Out-of-town Shopping Centre

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  1. 1. A Case Study of an Out-of-town Shopping Centre BLUEWATER
  2. 2. AN INTRODUCTION: Bluewater is a good example of a Regional Shopping Centre It was built in a disused chalk quarry which was in use throughout the 1960’s-1980s. Bluewater has over 14 hectares of retail space and nearly 1.5 hectares for indoor leisure use. The rest of the site is occupied by parkland, lakes and car parking. (BROWNFIELD SITE) Bluewater has 25 million visitors per year – it has a large threshold population . Bluewater has 11 million people living within one hours drive – so it has a good catchment area and 59% are better off “White Collar” workers.
  3. 3. <ul><li>WHAT’S THERE? </li></ul><ul><li>320 Shops </li></ul><ul><li>Parking for 13,000 cars </li></ul><ul><li>Open until 9pm each day </li></ul><ul><li>3 anchor stores – John Lewis, M&S, House of Fraser </li></ul><ul><li>Café and Restaurants </li></ul><ul><li>50 acres of lakes and parkland, playgrounds and cycle ways </li></ul><ul><li>12 screen cinema </li></ul><ul><li>creche </li></ul><ul><li>safe, pleasant environment </li></ul><ul><li>complete leisure experience – family day </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>GREAT TRANSPORT LINKS: </li></ul><ul><li>40 minutes from Central London </li></ul><ul><li>Severed by 60 buses per hour </li></ul><ul><li>A mile from the M25 and the A2/M2 junction </li></ul><ul><li>Good Rail links </li></ul><ul><li>Free Parking </li></ul>LOCATION: Located in Kent (SE England). It is about 35km from Central London and the nearest towns are Dartford and Gravesend. Blue water's developer has spend £30 million on improvements to the public road network around bluewater and local bus services and long distance coach services enable people to visit. Footpaths and cycle paths also enable locals to visit safely.
  5. 5. <ul><li>CRITICS: </li></ul><ul><li>Too close to Thurrock – although after initial interest largely unfounded (could see Thames as a physical barrier?) </li></ul><ul><li>Impact on Gravesend and Dartford – here the CBD’s have suffered from competition, “dead heart” – so how do they fight back? </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental Impact:- </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased congestion on the roads / accidents (congestion every day – till late) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Light pollution </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Now acting as a growth pole, attracting hotels, business parks in an already busy area </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have attempted to “blend in” i.e. grey colour, tree planting, in a quarry etc. </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>FUTURE: </li></ul><ul><li>Government policy now reversed – this is probably the last centre to be built – now policy of discouraging such developments in favour of revitalising town centres. </li></ul><ul><li>On similar lines – quote from Guardian 2004 “ The government has dealt a blow to Ikea's expansion plans by refusing it permission to build a new furniture store near Stockport, Manchester. Ministers were unhappy with the siting of the new store by the Swedish DIY furniture giant, because it would generate too many car journeys, and could undermine existing town centre stores across the region. Experts said the decision spells the end for the traditional out-of-town location of Ikea stores close to motorways.” </li></ul><ul><li>2. Financially a success – it compliments the growing leisure trends in the UK (Bluewater has 3 leisure villages – (i) The Wintergarden (Family Village); The Village (The Lifestyle Village – health, home, garden and fine foods) and The Water Circus (Media / Entertainment Village) – caters for all shoppers (all ages / genders) </li></ul><ul><li>3. Looks set to expand – with the building of the Tunnel Rail Link and the local Ebbfleet station as well as the Eurostar, catchment area will expand to include the French, Belgiums etc. as special weekend are marketed. </li></ul>