The latest report from UK shopping centres body BCSC and property advisor CBRE has added weight to the argument that LED lighting has become crucial to energy efficiency improvements and the valuation of malls.
Making malls energy efficient adds five per cent to their value"
The report on the environment and rationale for sustainability has taken a deliberately financial stance on enhancing the value of shopping centres and estimated that making malls energy efficient adds five per cent to their value.
BCSC president and chief executive of UK property investor Hammerson, David Atkins, said: 'In the past reports have tended to be either very theoretical or very technical. This is one of the first attempts to present the arguments in a straightforward and logical way to those who may be making or advising on sustainability strategies and to put numbers on the topic.'
He added: 'There is no doubt that the potential upside of investment per pound is highest among those schemes which may have adopted more of a "sticking plaster" approach to maintenance and replacing equipment in the past.'
Rebecca Pearce, EMEA head of sustainability at CBRE, who authored the report, said it is an attempt to persuade sceptics and, analysing 35 centres across the spectrum of malls, the report has sought to provide evidence that it is something any landlord can achieve.
The single most positive thing that could be done to improve energy efficiency in shopping centres is undoubtedly the installation of LED lighting"
'The crux of the report is to show that sustainability is worth investing in,' she said. 'The most obvious is replacing existing lighting with LED lighting and really we are beyond the time to justify this and to the point of saying ‘just get on and do this guys’.'
Heino Vink, COO of Dutch-based shopping centre giant Multi Corporation, has also backed LED lighting replacement and, speaking at an International Council of Shopping Centres event in London last month, said: 'Looking at the single most positive thing that could be done to improve energy efficiency in shopping centres, it is undoubtedly the installation of LED lighting.'
Davinder Jhamat, head of research and education at BCSC, said that the breadth of shopping centres reviewed showed that the biggest gains may be in those older, secondary schemes which lacked investment during the austerity years. 'The case for LED lighting is very well proven. How difficult is it, after all, to change a light bulb? We’re not talking about the lifts or major HVAC changes. But this is also not just about the corporate level, it needs to be embedded.'