// M&S wants to redevelop its Marble Arch flagship to reduce retail space and create offices
// Its proposals include 3 lower floors of retail and 6 upper floors of offices
// A planning application is expected to be submitted later
Marks & Spencer has revealed redevelopment plans for its Marble Arch flagship in central London that will see it downsize retail space and create offices on upper floors.
According to The Times, M&S’s flagship, located just a few blocks down from other department store flagships on Oxford Street, could be demolished and then redeveloped with reduced retail space and new offices.
It’s thought that the redevelopment could comprise of three lower floors trading as M&S, offering a broad range of food, fashion and home goods and with in-store technology to promote products from its ecommerce site.
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Meanwhile the six upper floors of the redevelopment would be made up of 300,000sq ft of office space.
A planning application is expected to be submitted later this year after M&S completes a consultation process with interested parties, such as customers and the local community.
M&S said its proposal would offer “a modern retail environment” while also allowing it to “unlock value” through prime office space.
Unlike retail space, top-quality offices have retained high demand and valuations during Covid-19 pandemic.
“The launch of our proposal to redevelop Marble Arch is the latest example of how we are shifting gears in creating a store estate fit for the future,” M&S retail and property director Sacha Berendji said.
“Under our Never the Same Again programme we are focused on emerging stronger from the pandemic, and today’s proposal not only means we can redevelop and modernise our store so that it better serves the local community on the UK’s destination high street, but by taking an assertive approach to the management of our asset base, we can unlock additional value from the site at the same time and further support our transformation.”
M&S’s proposal has similarities with that of John Lewis, which also wants to convert parts of their large shops into either co-working space or residential flats.