Is this a glimpse of the future for Kirkcaldy’s Postings?

Artist's CGI impression of how The Postings shopping centre could look after development.
Artist's CGI impression of how The Postings shopping centre could look after development.
0
Have your say

Look familiar? Yes, this is a vision of what Kirkcaldy Postings shopping centre could look like after major redevelopment.

The entire shopping centre, including space made vacant by Tesco’s departure, is currently being marketed by Glasgow-based retail property consultants DWR.

Agent Drew Waddell told the Press he firmly believes there is still “economic life” in the building, which boasts nearly 90,000 sq ft of retail space and is owned by investment company Columbia Threadneedle.

He said: “The preference would be to get the building away as a whole but failing that we would subdivide it.

“There was an offer of interest from an occupier who wanted a 15 year-lease on the Tesco site but unfortunately the terms of the offer were insufficient.”

Mr Waddle dismissed rumours of an approach by Primark and reports of interest from an international supermaket looking to break into the UK market

He did confirm current interest in sub-dividing the Tesco space among a number of retailers.

To allow for development, existing tenants are signed to leases with break clauses and the site itself was “well positioned” he added.

However, admittedly, the building did pose obstacles to prospective developers.

“There are challenges with the current rating system and car parking charges,” he said.

The Press understands the owner continues to work closely with Fife Council to find ways to let the site.

A spokesman said: “Columbia Threadneedle Investments is looking at all options for the site, however there are no firm proposals agreed at this stage.”

As a wider debate continues over ways to attract to shoppers back to Kirkcaldy Town centre, existing businesses have found it difficult to weather the economic shift to online shopping and retail parks.

Aitken’s for Men, the barber’s situated in the bus station, is set to close, with director Nick Mair saying the closure of Tesco had “significantly” lowered footfall.

“I can’t blame it all on Tesco,” he said, “Unfortunately we didn’t have enough coming in compared to what was going out. It’s the same for a lot of businessses.

“Things were tight as it was but since Tesco closed our figures have gone down. I spoke to everyone that I could, Fife Council and the like, to try and trim our overheads as we didn’t want to close, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough.”

The company has recently opened a new salon in the Kingdom Centre in Glenrothes and Nick, who said that one member of staff will be made redundant, said he feared for Kirkcaldy’s town centre.

“I’ve spoken to other business owners in The Postings and the Tesco closure has hit them hard.

“I find what’s happening to Kirkcaldy town centre personally to be very worrying. I really don’t know where it’s going. It’s in danger of becoming a ghost town.”

Meanwhile, the Post Office, which is currently looking for a longer term address in Kirkcaldy town centre , will temporarily locate at Unit 13 in the Postings.

The existing post office closes at lunchtime on Thursday, June 11 and reopens in its new location at lunchtime, Tuesday June 16.

While part of Tesco’s, the post office was used by around 4000 elderly customers and former MP Gordon Brown, who campaigned to keep the service in Kirkcaldy town centre, said it was important their needs were addressed.

He said: “Originally Tesco promised they would keep the current post office open to the end of the year.

“They have now paid the post office to move.

“I don’t want any further disruption of customers beyond the weekend move.”