OFFALY’S stock of shopping centre and retail park accommodation per 1,000 persons is 37% below the national average according to research carried out by CBRE.
However, the picture is much different in neighbouring Westmeath and Laois who stand at 84% and 16% above the national average, respectively.
Indeed, Westmeath has the third greatest overall (behind Louth +94% & Carlow +93%) retail density in the country with almost 1,200 square metres of shopping centre and retail park accommodation for every 1,000 people living in the county. This equates to a density that is 84% greater than the national average of 630 square metres per 1,000 persons.
Regarding shopping centres specifically, new developments in Athlone and Mullingar, have resulted in Westmeath topping the density ranking with 82% more shopping centre space per 1,000 persons than the national average. Offaly is 49% below the national average, while Laois is 51% above the national average.
Carlow is the densest county in terms of retail park accommodation, while other eastern counties such as Wexford, Wicklow, Meath and Kildare are, given their proximity to the capital and its retail offer, surprisingly undersupplied in both shopping centre and retail park accommodation.
A CBRE spokesperson commented, “The pattern of development has been uneven with some counties surprisingly undersupplied and others are oversupplied.”
The spokesperson added, “Considering the current retail environment and the lack of development funding at present, it is no surprise that there has been no new speculative retail construction completed over the last twelve months.”