Whiteley Shopping Centre – Phase 1
A shopping centre featuring 55 units and an extension to the adjacent leisure centre was constructed in 2013 to enhance the local residential town of Whiteley; a project on which evolve provided structural engineering services. Whiteley is a relatively new town with the first houses constructed in the late 1980s. As with many large new developments, the community experienced problems owing to a slow provision of local amenities. The centre replaced an existing Factory Outlet development which was not providing the new town residents with the facilities they needed.
The shopping centre was designed to create a natural environment and is centred around a new town square with a high quality public realm, double height glazed retail units, landscaped spaces and public art. It serves Whiteley as a town centre, whilst having very easy access for the wider catchment. It encompasses 400,000 sq ft of retail and leisure, with tenants including M&S, Topshop, Fat Face, Joules, H&M, River Island and Next. There are also several restaurants and cafés, including Wagamama, Yo! Sushi, Chimichanga, Ed’s Diner, Prezzo and Caffé Nero. Whiteley became the first UK shopping centre to achieve a BREEAM 2008 ‘Excellent’ rating.
The retail unit shop fronts are double height (8m) frameless structural glazed system without any support structure to the rear for the first three metres in height. This was to enable retailers the opportunity to place their displays up to the shop fronts. The cladding is oak to all non-glazed elevations.
The centre will add further facilities to support the local community as the expansion of Whiteley continues with a possible urban extension to the north of the exiting town of up to 3,500 houses and associated infrastructure including transport, educational and community facilities.