This post was first published by Croydon Advertiser on 04/06/2018.
Could this be Croydon? Westfield reveals futuristic design for shopping centres
CGI designs have been released to show what Westfield shopping centres could look like in 2028.
Westfield has unveiled futuristic designs to give customers a glimpse of how shopping centres could look in 10 years time.
It will soon be a decade since the retail giant opened in Shepherd’s Bush and to mark the milestone, Westfield has taken a leap into the future to predict what visitors will want when they go to a shopping centre in 2028.
Artist impressions of the Westfield ‘Destination 2028’ concept show gardens being created in shopping centres and drones flying to deliver items to customers.
These designs have been released after it was confirmed on Thursday (May 31) that a huge John Lewis and Waitrose will be the anchor store of Westfield Croydon, with work on the super mall due to get underway in early 2019.
The Westfield ‘Destination 2028’ concept was created by a panel of experts, including a futurologist and people from the fashion and retail industry, looking at trends for what customers will want and expect when they go shopping.
Myf Ryan, chief marketing officer at Westfield UK and Europe, said: “As we celebrate 10 years of pioneering retail in London we’re already looking forward to the next decade.
“We’ll continue to work closely with brands to deliver innovative retail spaces that create the ideal environment for them and our visitors – including developing technologies that converge digital and physical shopping to enhance that ‘extra-perience’ in state-of-the-art surroundings.”
They predict there will be a greater importance on ‘experience and leisure’ – meaning shoppers will want more than just to pop to the shops to quickly grab something.
Technology is expected to go to a whole new level. Tech-enabled ‘Extra-perience’ could see eye scanners bring up information on entry about a visitor’s previous purchases and recommend personalised fast-lanes around the centre.
And magic mirrors in changing rooms could save shoppers the hassle of trying on clothes by offering a virtual reflection of themselves wearing chosen clothes and accessories.
Allotments could give visitors the chance to pick their own produce for a meal, while a network of waterways could offer not only an alternative route around the centre but access to watersports as well.
The concept also reflects the rise of the sharing economy, with rental-retail expected to become the norm for shoppers who will be able to rent everything from clothes to exercise gear.
More pop-up, temporary retail and co-working spaces will also emerge, according to the panel of experts.
With leisure and entertainment expected to become ever more important in attracting the next generation of shoppers, stage areas would be set up to host a series of showpiece interactive activities and events.