Benoy to design new-look St Marks Place in Newark
4:00pm Thu Dec 04, 2014
 
Architects who work on massive retail schemes around the world have been commissioned to bring a new look to a shopping centre in their home town.
National retailers Wilko are one of mainstays of St Marks Place, which is to be given a new look by Newark architects Benoy
National retailers Wilko are one of mainstays of St Marks Place, which is to be given a new look by Newark architects Benoy
The St Marks Place project will mark a return to what was the first retail design scheme for Newark-based Benoy.

It has been commissioned by the latest owners of St Marks Place, Topland Group, to rebrand the shopping precinct and redesign the street scene.

Property investors Topland bought the 150,000sq ft open-air precinct earlier this year for more than £19m.

St Marks links the Market Place and Stodman Street with the town’s bus station and Asda.

In 1974, it was the first retail scheme Benoy was involved in.

The firm has since gone on to design some of the most iconic retail developments around the world, including the Westfield centre in London, the Bull Ring in Birmingham, the Bluewater centre in Kent, Ningbo Plaza in China, Hsin Chu Station Mall in Taiwan and New Delhi’s Pacific Mall in India.

Associate director Emily Pieters said: “Working in our backyard on the original Benoy retail scheme, St Marks Place, shows the importance of retaining local ties, despite the global breadth of our portfolio today.

“Benoy has been a retail specialist since 1974 when we were first appointed to St Marks Place.

“Forty years on, the approach to retail has evolved and Topland Group has asked Benoy to bring a fresh concept to the branding and positioning of the development.

“Benoy is delighted to be involved in the scheme again, designing a comprehensive new approach to the branding, signage and public realm. It will be a contemporary design evolved from the historic characteristics of the town.

“St Marks will better serve Newark and bring more vitality to the town centre upon completion of the scheme; and remain an important milestone in the Benoy global portfolio.”

Topland said it hoped to start the redevelopment in the new year.

A website has been set up to promote the area­.

The St Mark's Lane shopping precinct started to take shape in November 1976
The St Mark's Lane shopping precinct started to take shape in November 1976



St Marks Place is anchored by major national retailers Marks and Spencer and Wilko, along with a 512-space NCP carpark.

It has 32 retail units with other high street names, including New Look, Game, Holland & Barrett and WHSmith.

Topland recently let unit 10 in the main shopping area to outdoor clothing and pursuits specialist Trespass.

The unit is being fitted out to allow the new store to open before Christmas.

The letting follows the opening of ladies’ fashion boutique La Di Da in unit 1-6, Clinton Arms Court.

Director of retail property at Topland, Mr Steve Pope, said: “The letting to Trespass will bring a contemporary outdoor offer to the town centre.

“La Di Da reinforces the quality independents that we want to encourage in our courtyards/lanes.”

Four vacant units remain in St Marks Place.


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