Does anyone know if a decision has been made as to which supermarket will be going into the Berkeley Homes development at Tabbard Square? I am hoping it will be a Waitrose (John Lewis if your listening). Given that the development is supposed to be done sometime in 2005 I am sure the ink will almost be dry.
A few of us were trying to work it out - We didn't think it would be Tesco (with one in E&C and the superstore near by), bets were down on Sainsbury - given the new one in Borough H.S. Safeway has a big store not to too far away at Wapping - and I believe their parent company is not expanding it as agressively as they once were. Which leaves us with Waitrose or perhaps ASDA.
The planning application was for a supermarket of 1700 square metres (c.17,000 sq ft)- I'm hopeless at visualising these things, but I understand that a threshold of 1400 square metres was used to define "major stores" in the recent Competition Commission investigation of the Safeway takeover.
So, it may well be large enough for a Waitrose, but I'm not aware of them having built a car parking free store of that size to date - I assume the basement car parking in the scheme is reserved for the residents???
E&C shopping centre won't be knocked down until at least 2007, so I can't see it being a Tesco. Though having said that they do like to saturate areas with their presence. I'd quite like to see it being a Waitrose, but Waitrose don't seem to like shoving their stores into small spaces (Belgravia excepted). An M&S would be nice ... (please, not another Sainsbury's)
Well Waitrose has done as Non Carparking store before - there is the one in Belgravia - which isn't too big and certianly doesnt have a parking spaces for it. Given that our thread on the Safeway ended up in the John Lewis inhouse mag - perhaps our pleas will be answered! Also how large is the Waitrose on Marylebone High Street? Again it has no parking and isn't too big.
I'll find out the average size of a Waitrose store for you, should know this on Sunday. As far as I am aware there are no plans at the moment for a Waitrose store in SE1; the focus at the moment is on converting the 19 Safeway stores bought from Morrisons, and most of these are in areas where Waitrose has no presence at all, like Wales and the north of England
However, with the rising status of SE1 I'm sure it'll only be a matter of time before it happens.
Waitrose Belgravia is a very interesting case. It's the smallest store Waitrose has opened for nearly 20 years. Believe it or not, when the Crown Estate earmarked the site for a supermarket, Tesco offered more money for the location, but they went with Waitrose. I supppose it just adds a bit of prestige to the area and helps to push property prices up (not to mention that Tesco would lower the tone somewhat :-))!
I have lived in Marylebone for 3 years and the only thing I miss is Waitrose. Having said that, it is interesting you say, Tom, that Tesco would lower the tone of the neighbourhood. I listened to a documentary on Radio 4 on supermarkets and they described the current success of Tesco being the result of upgrading the store from a 'bleu collar' store to more 'white collar' without alienating themselves form their original clientele. In that respect, Tesco would perfectly fit into SE1. But, it has to be said, Waitrose is a lovely store but definitely more expensive and as such less accessible for people with a lower budget.
Cheers for finding out what you can Tom I can't wait to see what you find out.
I know what you mean Maurits however you still will have the large Tesco's and if what Tharq says is true also ASDA in close proximity which would cater for people with the lower budgets.
Furthermore, given that the only 30% of the development is earmarked for affordable housing (what ever that is these days) I doubt it would be a concern. Given that the average price in SE1 seems to be £240,000+ and getting more and more affluent by the moment - I only dread to imagine what prices they are going to pitch the non affordable flats in the block for.
Waitrose doesn't have a presence here and it seems to be an ideal match for their strict criteria for opening a store. Especially with the E and C project also in the pipeline.
I read something somewhere once (vague I know) about how they select areas to go into. If anyone knows or has seen this article - could you let me know?