Shopping malls are still being built, while the attention of the authorities is directed towards the development of street commercial areas. After 23 years of capitalism, the Romanians show signs that they might come out of the hypnosis for small cities of luxury (shopping malls), while returning towards the authentic and local (street shop).
If we take a look at the figures, Bucharest, with its current stock of shopping centers – about 800,000 square meters – is on a lower position from the leasable space density point of view (416 square meters/ 1.000 inhabitants), compared to other capitals in the region, such as Warsaw, Prague and Bratislava, which exceed 600 square meters/ 1,000 inhabitants.
“The frenzy of shopping mall developments still meets Romanian consumers preferences, still more focused on the phenomenon of walking, social display, ‘window shopping’ and leisure, than on the shopping activity itself”, says Laura Berezitchei ( Real Estate Account Manager for the Office& Commercial Department in Crosspoint ).
Both the underway developments, and the announced ones, will set this density value to a level similar to the one of the neighboring countries, under the terms of much lower average income. Following their completion, most likely the threshold of supportability for Bucharest will be reached.

During the next period, with the support of the authorities, the focus will be shifted on street commerce development, presently far more poorly from the “high street shopping” concept point of view.
For the time being, shopping arteries of Bucharest – Calea Victoriei, Magheru, Dorobanti – continue to be characterized by a lack of necessary infrastructure (shortage of parking spaces, pedestrian and access areas), limited options in terms of shops and brands diversity, too small size spaces to accommodate anchor stores.
Starting with 2014, Bucharest Municipality plans to transform Unirii Boulevard- an area with great touristic and commercial potential – , into a shopping promenade.
“The artery may be similar to retail and promenade areas from major European capitals, with the potential to turn into a local Champs Elysees, a measure which will definitely be welcomed by both exclusive retailers and luxury buyers, who do not enjoy to get lost in the mall crowds “said Laura Berezitchei, adding that without these measures put in place, there are no chances for a coherent development of street retail.

You can read more on:
Daily Business