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15 December 2011, 08:00 | Updated: 15 December 2011, 13:53
It has been confirmed today that Tower Ramparts shopping centre in Ipswich now has some new owners.
LaSalle Investment Management are making the investment have previously worked on projects in the town including Felaw Maltings on the Waterfront in the 1990s, and the most recent was the building and leasing of Grafton House headquarters in 2005
Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre, which opened to the public 25 years ago, is a 130,000 square foot shopping centre with 38 units over three levels.
The new owners say it has been neglected over recent years and has not benefitted from any internal investment and think it needs revitalisation.
LaSalle say they are in talks with various major high street retail brands regarding the potential for the scheme and claim to have received very positive feedbackso far.
Gavin Ingram at LaSalle Investment Management said:
'This is a great opportunistic purchase to add to our portfolio. Our aspirations are to rejuvenate the shopping centre and continue to build on the existing strong retail offering in Ipswich. We expect Tower Ramparts to become the northern axis point for Ipswich town centre and we are already in talks with various national retailers regarding the potential for the scheme.'
Councillor David Ellesmere, Leader of Ipswich Borough Council, said he was delighted by the purchase:
'This multi-million pound commitment is a welcome vote of confidence in Ipswich. Investment in our town centre is vital to securing a vibrant and thriving retail sector. We look forward to working with LaSalle to maximise the potential of Tower Ramparts.'
Paul Clement, Executive Director for Ipswich Central added:
'I have never hidden the fact that Ipswich’s retail offer needs to be improved but, in order to achieve this, a ‘game-changing’ transaction needed to be brought forward. I am delighted that this work has already led to new investment, and now that this transaction has been completed we will be working very closely with LaSalle to help deliver our joint plans.'
Mike Sorhaindo at Centre Manager added:
'I am extremely pleased that the uncertainty centred around the shopping centres future is now concluded with this great news. LaSalle are world leaders in the property and shopping centre industry and share the future aspirations we all have for the centre and improving the Town’s retail offer. I am positive that this expertise will contribute greatly in shaping the centres future retail offer for the benefit of all shoppers within the Ipswich area. The centre recently celebrated its 25th birthday and this is by far the best present that we could have expected. I am looking forward to working alongside the new management teams and in helping deliver a revitalised scheme that Ipswich will be very proud.'