Shoosmiths is one of five lead partners involved in the just launched Platform initiative, a town centre property innovation programme which aims to take advantage of the changed post-pandemic landscape as a generational opportunity to redesign how we organise the land and buildings at the heart of our neighbourhoods.
Platform brings together individuals and organisations with experience of the retail/commercial property system, from community entrepreneurs and local government to a national retailer and institutional investor, to share best practice, promote innovations in property access and ownership, lead the debate on how we move beyond the ‘landlord–tenant’ relationship and make policy recommendations to relevant government departments.
The aim is to present practical interventions that make town centre property more accessible to communities, whether that’s through promoting a better understanding of different types of community entrepreneurs and property owners and their needs and motivations to providing blueprints for ‘social value leases’ or establishing local asset-owning trusts alongside the traditional retailers and hospitality occupiers that are already in many high street locations.
Nathan Rees, real estate partner in Thames Valley, said: “Shoosmiths is excited and proud to support Platform. Social behaviours have changed and our town centres must change with them, addressing the needs of local communities whilst also presenting viable development and investment opportunities. With so many stakeholders involved, that will be challenging, but In what many describe as a post-retail environment, Platform can be a powerful catalyst, encouraging communities, property owners and local government to work together in partnership for change in our high streets.”
Platform partners represent a balanced mix of community entrepreneurs, local government, property owners and other property system stakeholders working with 16 diverse leaders representing community businesses, local government and investors from across the UK. Community entrepreneur Rebecca Trevalyan convenes the programme and aside from Shoosmiths other lead partners include High Streets Task Force, Power to Change, British Property Federation, New Local and Radix. To sign up to the mailing list to receive updates from the programme, click here.