Retail development in Serbia is being more and more diversified outside the vast city areas of Belgrade, Novi Sad, Niš, Subotica and Kragujevac. An excellent example of that is Šabac, one of the former industrial centers in Mačva, surrounded by the Drina river on the west, the Sava river on the north and the Kolubara river on the east. The new life is being breathed into the fallen industry in this city, while the locations for various contents, of which construction will follow the development of Šabac and its surroundings, have already been defined and reserved.
The territory of Šabac municipality includes crucial road and river corridors in the west of Serbia, in the valleys of the Drina and the Sava rivers. It is situated between Belgrade – Zagreb highway (E-75), that is, Vienna – Istanbul transverse route, in the north and cross-section Subotica – Bosnia and Herzegovina or Subotica - Užice transverse route M21. It occupies the area of about 800 square kilometers and, with nearly 130,000 citizens, it represents the regional center of Mačva. Also, due to vicinity of railway corridor X, broader territory of Šabac and Mačva has all predispositions to complete all of its potentials with the development of Valjevo-Loznica-Zvornik railway route.
Following the dissolving of SFRY, the Sava became an international river that passes through three independent states and it now represents an important factor of development of the existing industry that gravitates towards the river banks. City of Šabac is becoming an important center for distribution of larger quantity of goods to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and, of course, Serbia, which are then sent to the west and to the east. Having in mind, first of all, great agricultural potentials in Mačva, earlier developed lumber, tanning and metal industry, as well as revival of production in Šabac and its surroundings, this whole area has enviable potentials in field of real estate development, especially retail development. SME sector’s growing demand dictates and accelerates this development.
Northwest Zone Šabac
Northwest industrial zone is the supporting pillar of the economic development of Šabac municipality. The zone occupies nearly 1,000 ha and its development should enable the reduction in number of unemployed people in the municipality through creation of new jobs and the growth of tax incomes in the municipal budget. Development of infrastructure will be finished within next few years, which represents the basic precondition for that zone and construction of facilities wherein some business will be started. In principle, realization of public utility, gas and traffic infrastructure will be the main attractors for interested investors. What additionaly contributes to the quality of the northwest zone is the information that all interested investors will be granted access to the railways.
Having in mind the position of aforementioned zone in regard to Belgrade-Zagreb highway, it should also be mentioned that the preparations are underway for development of new section which will shorten the distance between this industrial zone and Belgrade-Zagreb highway by nearly 25 km.
Retail space development in Šabac and neighboring municipalities has significant prospects. It is at the same level as in all municipalities in Serbia outside the big cities. The process of arrival of the regional players that deal with retail space development has been visible lately. In addition to big cities, they started developing their projects in the municipalities of Inđija, Subotica, Sombor, Čačak, Valjevo, Užice, as well as in many cities in central and south Serbia.
A bright example is market chain Mercator whose facility at 23,000 square meters in Šabac, 14,000 square meters of which will be retail space, will soon be completed. It is expected that this project will be finished at the end of year 2008 or at the beginning of year 2009 and that it will provide jobs for 250 people. Also, French Intermarshe, with its Serbia-based daughter company Intermax, has already opened its fourth hypermarket in Šabac. There are 60 people working in it and the investment is estimated at 5m EUR. Another market chain that is present in Šabac is Delta Maxi, and there is also a small number of local developers. Having in mind the number of citizens and expected development of Šabac municipality and its surroundings, the need for further development of modern retail centers is more than obvious.
Because of everything mentioned above, it is not accidental that local development holding company YU Kapital chose two locations for its projects on the territory of Šabac municipality. The first location at 3.5 ha is named “Project X“, while the second location at about 3 ha is called “Project Y“. They are both situated along the road to Loznica. According to the valid land-utilization plan, there is a commercial zone for retail facilities in Majur sector. According to the allowed coefficients, development projects can be implemented at maximum 40% of the existing land.
Structure at both locations of these complexes will satisfy several classified types of lessees. There will be a space reserved for a hypermarket at 5,000 square meters, a space at up to 2,000 square meters for various appliances stores, as well as space for baby and kids stores. Also, there will be restaurants with total useful surface of up to 500 square meters.
However, the base of both projects will be a retail center at 13,000 square meters at one location and at about 16,000 square meters at the other location. Final positions and the nature of the lessees have not been defined yet, but it is already known that there will be footwear, clothing, goods and technical stores, as well as pharmacies and various medical stores.
While expecting the revival of industry in this region, the market will be offered retail spaces where the customers will be able to buy all types of goods to furnish their apartments and offices. There will also be fun and recreation contents, such as bawling alleys and playhouses for table tennis and billiard.
The basic strategy of the developer is to rent the space at 250 – 1,250 square meters to the main anchors, which will then attract other lessees, all that for the sake of completion of the offer in this retail center. The surfaces of about 100 square meters for fun and recreation contents will also be defined within the center, so that it can be said that the structure and the types of services in it will keep the center open from the early morning to the late evening hours. What must be pointed out is the fact that such concept with aforementioned contents has never been offered to Šabac and its surroundings. It is expected that the construction will start in mid-2009 and that this retail center will receive its first lessees and visitors in mid-2010. YU Kapital plans to realize “Project X“ by itself, while “Project Y“ will be realized in association with related developers.
It will be another contribution to development of Šabac through creation of new jobs and supplementing of the current offer in the retail space market. The developer will attract new companies to Šabac, which will then offer their products and services to this city and its surroundings!
AG Real Estate