Supporting placemaking in industrial and commercial developments

Supporting placemaking in industrial and commercial developments

With a number of property industry experts reporting a slowdown in demand for industrial and commercial property since mid-2022, potential buyers, tenants and occupiers will have greater choice than they have had during recent years.

So in a more competitive property market, which factors are going to make one site more appealing than another? Clearly the obvious factors of cost, location, size, expansion potential (in some cases) and terms will be key to decisions, but ESG (environmental and social governance) is also rising up the agenda for many businesses as they seek to ensure their operations do not negatively impact on the local environment or the health and wellbeing of people.

Industrial sites designed around the idea of ‘placemaking’ could, therefore, thrive as they offer employees and visitors greater connection with outdoor spaces, rather than simply being a box, yard and car park tightly packed onto a plot of land. Greater consideration is given to how the outdoor space is designed and built to facilitate a greater range of uses, including for socialising and out of work activities.

Multi-occupier industrial and commercial sites designed around the placemaking concept often feature communal spaces and facilities such as parks and gardens and areas to play sports. But individual businesses with a sufficiently large site could do the same too, giving staff an opportunity to spend some of their working day outdoors to benefit physically and mentally.

Design these spaces well and they can become popular with staff and get regular use throughout the year. That means ensuring they are equipped appropriately with seating, shelter and accessibility carefully considered to give outdoor space on industrial sites the broadest appeal.

But their usage can be maximised through the installation of an on-demand power infrastructure that enables facilities and events that require electricity to be connected as and when required. Incorporating in-ground, retractable (pop-up) or bollard power units into the site’s design means site managers can provide access for users when needed, but the rest of the time the units are barely noticeable.

Supporting placemaking in industrial and commercial developments

Providing access to power in an outdoor environment transforms the usage potential of a space. In a placemaking context, that could include hosting live entertainment events after the working day or enabling food and drink kiosks to set up to serve the workforce as they take their lunch break.

The range of power units provided by Pop Up Power Supplies is ideal for these kind of applications. Specifiers and developers can choose an in-ground unit, which is permanently submerged in the ground and accessed via a flip-lid, a pop-up unit or a power bollard.

The pop up power unit is installed in the ground and raised when required using a turning handle. After use, it is simply lowered back into the ground to be safely locked away. A power bollard offers similar connectivity in a format that can be integrated into the landscape with other street furniture, offering an electricity supply that’s ‘hidden in plain sight’.

Whichever product is chosen, they are always configured and manufactured to suit the application, giving designers the opportunity to meet the widest range of the potential uses for the site. A water supply can also be provided with some models, which can be beneficial from a grounds maintenance perspective.

And the power units can also be incorporated into vehicle yards and other hardstanding areas to allow for temporary production or storage spaces to be set up. This can drive value from under-utilised spaces and add capacity at peak times without the need to use or rent additional off-site facilities.

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Pop Up Power Supplies Limited® range of retractable service units provide electricity, water and data points to public spaces ranging from urban areas, historic sites, market places, town squares and parks. Our units also provide legacy for special-purpose stadiums.