The owner of Lewisham’s shopping centre is preparing to reveal its plans to redevelop the 1970s mall – and says that it could build 1,700 homes on the land.

Landsec-U+I will unveil its proposals next weekend in an exhibition in a shop unit inside the Lewisham Centre. A website set up to promote the scheme,, says it is planning “a radical new centre”

Plans will include a covered shopping centre as well as open streets, 1,700 homes as well as student and “shared living” housing, a music venue and a cultural hub.

A new public park – to be built on top of the new centre – will be the “crowning glory” of the new development, according to Landsec-U+I, which first announced its intention to redevelop the site two years ago.

“The park will be set above the hustle and bustle of the shopping centre and high street, and will include new play and rest and relaxation opportunities for visitors,” it says.

Sketch of plans for Lewisham centre
The plans include a park above the shopping centre. Credit: Landsec U+I

The mall has been a part of local life since it opened as the Riverdale Centre in 1977 after a lengthy redevelopment. Its Sainsbury’s store was once the largest in the capital and a generation of SE Londoners will remember the brightly coloured figures in the main square as well as the hippo and pelican-shaped bins, all swept away in a 1990s revamp.

Landsec is the largest commercial property developer in the UK and also owns the Bluewater centre in Kent. It recently merged with U+I, the developer beyond Deptford Market Yard and the controversial Morden Wharf scheme in Greenwich.

The shopping centre redevelopment will be the latest major change to hit Lewisham. The second phase of the Lewisham Gateway development is due to open next year, while 2024 will also see work begin on a multi-million pound revamp of the street market and library.

The exhibition will be held at 25 Lewisham Shopping Centre – next to XO Cycles – from 11.30am on Saturday November 11 and 11am on Sunday November 12. It will also be open on Wednesdays until Christmas. More details are at