Palermo, 22 November 2022
Multi Corporation has recently refurbished and extended Forum Palermo. The project included an extension of the food court, a reclassification of store space, new anchor stores and an investment in energy savings. These proactive asset management initiatives have resulted in higher rental income and sales, whilst reducing energy consumption, and driving operational efficiency.
Forum Palermo, the largest shopping centre in north-west Sicily, consists of a single storey structure, is fully let, and has a waiting list for new tenants. Multi developed Forum Palermo and has managed the mall since 2009. The shopping centre is a popular retail destination for locals and tourists alike and features over 130 stores, food and beverage amenities and a Multiplex cinema.
Reclassification of store space
Following negotiations between the hypermarket operator and Multi, agreement has been reached to downsize the hypermarket by 44% and modernise its fit-out. Renovation of the hypermarket under the new brand Deco will be completed by December 2022 and this will allow the store to become a premium supermarket. The remaining space has been leased to international and national brands Zara, Nike and OVS.
In order to improve the sustainability of the shopping centre and to reduce its energy consumption, Multi initiated an energy saving project at Forum Palermo. This included the installation of a new photovoltaic park, a new electric car charging station and replacing and updating the Building Management System.
The new photovoltaic panels, which cover about 2,500 sqm of the parking area, produce 42% of the property’s annual energy need in the common areas. They also enhance comfort by allowing visitors to park in the shade. From March 2022, 452 MWh of totally renewable energy has been produced. 96% of this has been used on site to provide energy to the common area of the shopping centre and covers 30% of the total consumption during spring and summer.
Food court extension pays off
The extension and renovation of the Food Court area was completed and announced in 2021, focused on expanding and improving the range and quality of food and beverage offerings. Five new restaurants and three kiosks were added. Its seating area was doubled and terraces were created outside the restaurants.
The new space comprises of an area of 1,400 sqm, about 2.8% of its total Gross Leasable Area. In the twelve months until September 2022, food court sales increased by more than a quarter compared with same period in 2019, the last year before the pandemic. The food court
concept, implemented by Multi’s internal design team, was developed to ensure maximum comfort and space for customers.
“We are very pleased with how our initiatives played out. Forum Palermo is a place where people enjoy spending time, thanks to its appealing merchandise mix, qualitative Food & Beverage offer and pleasant fit-out,” Luca Maganuco, Senior Managing Director of Multi in Italy, Hungary and Slovakia, says. “In addition, sustainability has been one of Multi’s key drivers in managing Forum Palermo, which is proven by the number of initiatives undertaken since the opening. This asset is a good example of how Multi makes a shopping centre future-proof.”