The man who bought The Postings shopping center in Kirkcaldy for £320,000 from the Columbia Threadneedle pension fund three years ago has revealed his vision for an ambitious £50million residential regeneration program for the strategic site downtown entrance to three acres.
Tahir Ali of national property development and asset management firm Evergold plans to demolish the abandoned mall, which has been ransacked and vandalized repeatedly in recent months.
Ali had to acquire numerous other properties along the High Street over the past two years, through private and often complicated negotiations, to enable the demolition of the old Postings shopping centre.
These have included the Bank of Scotland and the grand New Look and former Debenhams buildings. Although the former closed Debenhams store was redeveloped and temporarily reopened as the Fife Department Store a year ago, this unit will be closed this Sunday to allow demolition work to begin.
Once the demolition is complete, the site should be sold to a major developer who will redevelop it with a complete residential program. This is expected to include up to 300 apartments linked together by green walkways, designed to encourage pedestrian traffic to and from the main street and featuring landscaped public spaces.
“No one could have predicted how drastically the world would change in the year following the purchase of The Postings shopping center at auction in 2019,” Ali commented.
“While we had a number of exciting deals in the works with an independent supermarket chain and a state-of-the-art cinema operation in the former Tesco unit, the Covid pandemic has brought these plans to a screeching halt. . This prompted us to reconsider the site with a new approach.”
He added: “Covid has taught me the need to remain nimble and flexible with property projects, and that agility, coupled with the support of Fife Council and local councilors, has enabled us to radically rethink the proposal.”
“Coupled with ongoing developments along the picturesque Esplanade and Merchants Quarter in Kirkcaldy town centre, our redevelopment in the heart of Kirkcaldy should help attract other investors to advance their own restaurant, national chains, cinemas, hotels and other potential developments that will help revitalize and regenerate the downtown area and attract more people to the area as a place to live, work and play. »
Ali has worked closely with Ryden’s Greg Limb on the regeneration program for over two years, with Ryden advising on the best way forward for the project and addressing the interest that has already been expressed in redevelopment proposals.