As Ealing Broadway's Makeover Proceeds..

Will it leave some shops looking in need of a Trinny and Susannah?

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It will brighten up the day of Ealing's fashion conscious, but will trendy new clothes shops cast existing Ealing Broadway retailers into the shade? Or will it force them to dust off the cobwebs?

Arcadia developer Glenkerrin held an exhibition earlier this month to display their second pre-planning proposals for Central Ealing. New homes, new frontage for Haven Green and wider pavements are amongst the plans, as is an overhaul of Ealing Broadway station. And there's a definite slant on quality clothes shopping and eating out.

Asked by Ealing Today whether we'd be seeing chains the likes of Gap, a Glenkerrin spokesperson said to look even higher up the shopping chain! Zara and Jisgsaw are likelies and the focal point is going to be a large department store - John Lewis and Debenhams are said to be possibles.

So how is this likely to impact on the existing Broadway Shopping Centre? The spokesperson could only vouch for the land they are developing, but the hope is that it will have a knock on effect on everything around it.

Steve Breen of the Ealing Broadway Bid agrees: "On a commercial basis, I think it will be important to keep a close eye on what's happening across the road, but I hope it will boost what already exists in the Ealing Broadway Centre, having a broader range of leisure activity available." He added: "The town centre as a whole will benefit I think. Looking at the concept, it is in our interests to have that area redeveloped. What it will come down to is the detail."

One resident told Ealing Today that the new development couldn't come soon enough. "We've ben crying out for shops like these for years, but rather than seeing them filter into the centre, we've seen 'pound shops' cropping up!" she said. "The market's clearly there - at last our needs are going to be met, and it can only have a positive impact on the whole community."

Here’s how the developer describes plans on its website: “Glenkerrin's aim is to create a new public square in the centre of the site from which several urban streets will radiate thus improving the urban grain and pedestrian permeability.

“Animated with 51 new shops and seven cafes, restaurants and bars - the proposal brings the public domain into the heart of the development. Above retail the developers are proposing approximately 850 residential apartments, together with a small amount of commercial space. The combination of all these different uses will ensure that the new public spaces will be safe and lively 24-hour environments. It is intended that these buildings will work as a cluster but also have individual architectural character creating architectural variety across the 1.78 hectare site.”


March 22, 2007