University takes over empty store for community experiment

July 11, 2011 1 Comment »
University takes over empty store for community experiment

cardiff empty shop

An empty shop in the heart of Cardiff city centre will be taken over by a university this week.

The store on Queen Street will be home to a range of photography, design and fashion events for two weeks starting today.

A team from the University of Glamorgan will be running the ‘Great Big Empty Shop Experiment’ to see if a ‘community hub’ can be created one one of the busiest shopping streets.

Dr Gill Allard, head of the centre for policy & enterprise in creative industries, said they hoped to provide an ‘alternative space’ to the big shopping centres.

She said: “If you take a walk around Cardiff city centre and stray beyond the immediate environs of the impressive new St. David’s shopping precinct with its wealth of well-known retail brands, two things become apparent.

“First, there are an increasing number of empty shops around the city; and second, there are signs of a healthy independent retail and small enterprise sector, based particularly in the city’s beautiful Victorian arcades. We hope that our research will uncover new ways in which these unused spaces can be used to encourage the growth of small creative enterprises.”

The shop opens at 12noon on Monday 11th July with a painting day, and cutting edge cinema screenings, photography exhibitions and fashion exhibitions by university students will follow.

A full list of events and the location of the shop are available on the University website.

The image used in this article shows Andy Pearsall’s ‘Painting with Life’ workshop, which will take over the shop on Thursday 14 July from 2pm.

What do you think about the idea? Will you be visiting? Let us know your views in the comments below

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