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Singapore issues guidelines on retail unit sizes – Retail in Asia

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Singapore issues guidelines on retail unit sizes

Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has released new guidelines on retail unit sizes and corridor width, following an increase in the number of commercial and mixed-use development proposals for small retail units, ranging 9 to 25 square metros in size, and narrow corridors or those less than 1.5 metros wide.

URA said the proposed number of retail units is more than 10 times the existing number of units in the original development, which raises concerns about the impact of such developments on the surrounding areas in terms of car parking and traffic congestion.

"It is also questionable if such developments with predominantly small retail units can adequately meet the needs of shoppers in terms of offering a wider variety of products and services, as well as a good shopping experience for the public," the URA added.

Under the new guidelines, the average retail unit size should not be less than 50 square metres and should provide minimum corridor widths of 2 to 2.4 metres (single loaded) and 2.4 to 3 metros (double loaded).

URA said the requirement for corridor width is to ensure there is sufficient space for the movement of pedestrians, stroller and wheelchair users, as well as window shoppers based on universal design principles.

URA said small retail units can cater to certain types of trades such as stationery shops, florists, money changers and mobile phone accessories shops. However, there is a wide range of retail uses that have different space needs.

"There is a need to ensure a good range of retail units of different sizes to meet genuine retailers’ space needs across the spectrum of uses and to serve the public better," it said.