A planning application for temporary units for Elephant and Castle traders during the shopping centre’s demolition has been submitted to Southwark Council’s planning committee.
The proposal from developer Delancey says that shopping centre tenants will be given first refusal for the flexible space – a total of 5,072 square feet.
The units will be available during the redevelopment. Long-term, the developer plans to create Castle Square as a retail and leisure area that people will stop and spend time in, rather than just passing through.
Delancey is also working with Southwark Council and independent advisers to set up a ‘relocation fund’ to help cover expenses for traders displaced by the shopping centre regeneration.
Despite Southwark Council’s planning committee approving the shopping centre plans, the Greater London Authority has still yet to green-light the controversial project.
It is expected that legal agreements will need to be put in place between the council and Delancey before the Mayor’s office will give its assent.
A spokesperson from Delancey said: “Our vision is for the new town centre at Elephant and Castle to support the existing economy and community.
“An appealing mix of shops, that includes independent and local businesses, is key to this.
“We do, however, appreciate that numerous businesses will have to close their current premises during construction.
“We have therefore worked closely with our tenants and Southwark Council to develop a relocation strategy that ensures a fair and transparent process.
“This will be overseen by an Independent Relocation Panel.’
“Measures include numerous relocation opportunities, such as the proposed temporary retail space at Castle Square.
“This new pop-up shopping destination has been designed exclusively for existing tenants.
“All independent businesses impacted are eligible for independent advice from business advisers, Tree Shepherd, to help them plan for the future.
“Tree Shepherd will also be responsible for administering the £635,000 relocation fund to cover the cost of relocation.
“Existing independent traders will also have first option on the affordable retail in the new town centre.’’