The Crown Estate and The Architects’ Journal launch ‘Future Retail Destinations’ competition

The Crown Estate has joined forces with The Architects’ Journal, the AJ, to launch a new architectural competition, focused on the retail destination of the future. 


13 March 2018

The Future Retail Destinations competition asks entrants to design an innovative and successful retail park, fit to operate from 2030 onwards. Entries should consider the experience created for shoppers, the important role of quality public realm, the increasing impact of tech in retail and the environmental sustainability of the scheme.

The contest will begin with an open ideas competition, asking designers to create a concept design for an out of town shopping destination, for 2030 and beyond. The best 10-12 entries will present their ideas to an expert judging panel.

At the second stage, six winners from this group will be selected to take part in a site visit and one day charrette, which will focus on one of The Crown Estate’s existing regional retail destinations.

We’re challenging ourselves to think hard about how the best retail destinations can adapt to meet shoppers’ changing expectations, on everything from the growing role of technology in retail, to sustainability, community and shopper experience.”

Hannah Milne, Director of Regional Retail at The Crown Estate

Hannah Milne, Director of The Crown Estate’s Regional Retail portfolio, said: ‘We’re challenging ourselves to think hard about how the best retail destinations can adapt to meet shoppers’ changing expectations, on everything from the growing role of technology in retail, to sustainability, community and shopper experience. This is a fantastic opportunity, working with the best talent, to explore what brilliant retail destinations might look like out to 2030 and beyond, as we shape our portfolio for the future.’

Will Hurst, AJ Managing Editor, said: ‘Bricks and mortar retail has been changing rapidly and this is surely set to continue over the next decade. Out of town retail parks will need to transform themselves to incorporate the latest digital innovations but also to excel in areas that online shopping cannot offer and design is a key element of this. We’re delighted that our readers will once again have the opportunity to pitch their abilities to The Crown Estate in this free-to-enter competition.’

Submissions must be received by 16 March. The AJ and The Crown Estate will then select a shortlist of 10-12 teams who will present their designs to a panel of judges on the week commencing 23 April. The final six teams will take part in a site visit on the week commencing 7 May with the charrette held on the week commencing 21 May.

Each of the six architects, practices or teams taking part in the charrette will receive a £1,000 honorarium for their time and both winners and shortlisted entries will be publicised by the AJ and The Crown Estate.

This latest AJ/ Crown Estate contest follows the success of Future Office in 2016, which focused on inspiring and effective workplaces.

For more information on the Future Retail contest, and to enter, please visit: Future Retail Destinations micro site.