Current operational malls in Kolkata - Forum Mall, Home Land, Gariahat Mall, Fort Knox, City Centre, Metropolis Mall, Orbit Mall, South City Mall, Shagun Mall, E-Mall - with more than Approx 1.4 million sq ft of built-up space in total.
The fast growing middle-class population and the rise in women workforce and consumerism over the decade are the major force in driving demand in the retail sector. To the present generation shopping has evolved from a need-based activity to leisure-time entertainment. Consumers have begun spending a lot of time and money dining at fast food and fine dining restaurants and malls are now fast becoming image benchmarks for communities. The future of Indian malls is in the Hybrid format, the Discount malls and Gen X malls that have emerged as the hottest concepts.
The real estate sector in West Bengal has responded well to the growth of the organized retail sector and this has led to a phenomenal rise in supply of space for organized retail operations year after year. Retail, the next two years will see an additional 5.5 million square feet of shopping space getting occupied in Kolkata.
Now the action is taking place in newly developing suburbs such as the area around the EM Bypass. At least five new malls are slated to come up in the suburban markets in the near future and each one will be between 400,000 sq ft and 450,000 sq ft. Two others are being developed in other parts of the city. Leading the charge into the malls is Forum. They are now planning two sprawling malls on the EM Bypass. By the end of 2009, Kolkata will have 17 new shopping malls with nearly six malls coming up at Rajarhat alone.
Some of the big upcoming shopping malls in and around Kolkata include Axis, Xtra, Avani Europa, Avani Riverside, Avani Renaissance, Block by Block, Kolkata Central, Diamond VIP Plaza, Diamond Heritage, Diamond City North, Acropolis (Rajdanga), Lake Mall, City Centre-II-Downtown, The Forum-II, Mani Square, The Terminus, DLF-Grand Mall, Unitech-Downtown, Haute Street, La Vida Mall, Downtown Mall, New Town Square, Oasis Galleria, Olive Street, Ozone Mall-VIP Rd, Ozone Mall- Madhyamgram, RPG-Godrej Plaza, Rainbow Mall, Shop-Out, Trinity Arcade, Trinity Glitz, Varna Parichay to name a few. South City Mall is one of the largest shopping mall with 4 major Anchors with a usable area in excess of 7.5 lakh square feet.
Ultimately, as the industry develops the consumer will have a choice of various retail destinations. The most recent trend in West Bengal’s retail construction is in the direction of mixed-used developments, encompassing both retail and residential. This is customer driven as people want to live within a development with good infrastructure and amenities at hand, like schools, shops and hospitals, leisure, entertainment and fine dining.