Focus should be on revamping ageing, run-down malls

It is not uncommon to see local shopping malls and eateries undergoing major addition and alteration works on a fairly frequent basis.

Over the past year, the prices of food have invariably escalated following the completion of upgrading works at some foodcourts, particularly those managed by conglomerates or major players in the food and beverage industry.

A meal with a drink could cost up to $8 on average. Even with discounts for those who sign up as members, the price is still something to be reckoned with.

There seems to be no compelling reason for such upgrading projects, apart from augmenting overall aesthetics, and perhaps to boost share prices.

In contrast, decades-old mixed developments such as Golden Mile Complex, People's Park Complex and Queensway Shopping Centre are in poor condition.

Ironically, there does not seem to be any plans to revamp the mechanical and electrical system and amenities in those buildings.

It would be more justifiable to carry out major facelifts at such buildings.

I hope developers and mall owners would spare a thought for consumers and affordability before embarking on any upgrading projects in future.

Teo Kok Seah

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 13, 2016, with the headline 'Focus should be on revamping ageing, run-down malls'. Print Edition | Subscribe