Studied last August by our data-collectors, the city centre of Antwerp includes 1,315 shops. They are distributed on five Sites : the shopping streets, three shopping centres (Century Center, Grand Bazar Shopping Center, Stadsfeestzaal) and Antwerpen-Centraal Station.
In 2020, for the first time since 2014, the vacancy rate (14.9 %) was superior to the national average (14.4 %).
In 2021, the vacancy rate continued to rise and went up to 17.2 %.
Given that the national vacancy rate in Belgian city centres is not available yet, we can not confirm the continuity or the reversal of this trend. The national vacancy rate will be available at the end of the year, as the fixed date for the 2021 updates is set for 31st of December.
This is a relatively significant increase in the vacancy rate (+2.3 points) which aligns with the one registered between 2019 and 2020 (+2.5 points). Nevertheless, the increase in 2021 remains lower than in 2020.
As for the evolution of the number of shops, the activities "Clothing" and "Perfumes – Beauty - Body care" registered the highest losses : -27 and -10 shops respectively.
As a consequence of this decrease : the "Clothing" activity, which had been the most represented activity for more than ten years, has been replaced by the activity "Café – Hotel - Restaurant".
Since 2018, the latter has been steadily gaining ground on "Clothing". It now ranks first with 321 shops while "Clothing" has dropped to 318 shops (compared with 345 in 2020).