Growthpoint Properties has converted its ageing retail warehousing property M1 Place in Marlboro, Sandton, into a modern retail park, with an R85m revamp. The fully let property is well known as home to United Furniture Outlets and United Fashion Outlets.
The one-year upgrade and expansion project has modernised the retail
park and increased its size from 13,800m2 to 23,000m2. The revamp has also enabled each of its original tenants to expand
into bigger spaces, as well as adding three new names to its mix.
Engelbert Binedell, industrial division director for Growthpoint Properties, explains: “M1 Place is a prominent and highly visible property asset, and it is home to great businesses. However, it had become outdated in recent years. We identified its refurbishment and expansion as a good investment to unlock better performance from the asset and extend its lifecycle. This strategic upgrade is already achieving its intended benefits.”
UFO Furniture's space has nearly doubled from 7,800m2 to 15,000m2, while UFO Fashion has also expanded, growing from 1,900m2 to 2,500m2. Linen & Lifestyle also extended its offering from 1,400m2 to 1,700m2. In addition, new upscale lighting brand Huayi Lighting opened an 850m2 showroom store. The Loxion Factory Shop, which specialises in corporate and branded clothing as part of UFO Fashion opened in a 460m2 shop.
New event and conference space
Located in the new extension of the retail park is The Galleria; the building of 2,000m2features a multifaceted, dedicated event space for conferences, a business centre with conference suites and dedicated meeting rooms. A highlight is its multiuse rooftop venue overlooking the iconic Sandton Central skyline. The Galleria is equipped with production facilities and a range of technical, décor and catering services.
According to Growthpoint, the upgrade of M1 Place was no simple project, with a specific challenge being delivering the refurbishment while its established retailers were still operating.
“This meant the project needed to achieve minimal disruption from construction activity and a phased development approach was key to this,” explains Leon Labuschagne of Growthpoint’s industrial division.
Internally, the building was completely gutted and renewed, with everything refinished to modern specifications, from lighting to tiles. Externally, the building’s glass façade was fully upgraded and modernised, as was the brickwork on the façade of the property. This ensured the existing main property matched the façade of the new building created for The Galleria. Also, the M1 Place’s resource efficiency was boosted by installing energy efficient lighting and some lower energy air conditioners.