India

Gurgaon malls report recovery: ‘Footfall 30% of pre-pandemic levels’

Three weeks after malls in Gurgaon were permitted to reopen, following five weeks of closure due to the second Covid wave, officials said the establishments have started seeing “good recovery” with the footfall having crossed “at least 30%” of what it was prior to the pandemic.

At Ambience Mall, for example, officials said they are seeing a footfall of almost 50,000 people on the weekends. “We are having quite a good footfall. It is also due to the continuous vaccination drives we hold and safety measures. On weekends, we are getting almost 50,000 people as compared to the footfall of 80-85,000 people on weekends before Covid hit. The numbers still haven’t reached pre-pandemic levels, but barely one month has passed since malls have reopened. This is a good recovery in terms of footfall,” said an official from Ambience Private Limited.

At MGF Metropolitan Mall on MG Road, similarly, association members said footfall has “picked up”. “It has not become normal. But that is not going to happen right now, at least at our mall. As part of our normal footfall, 40-50% of the people are window shoppers, who are not expected to come right now. Whoever is coming is a customer. If we count the normal numbers, we have reached 30% of it. All our shops have reopened,” said Aman Bajaj, member of the MGF Metropolitan Mall Association.

Officials from South Point Mall on Golf Course Road also said they have reached “around 50%” of their normal footfall.

“People have started coming. We have reached around 50% of our normal footfall. Our mall is a little different as people don’t come just to hang around. It is purpose-driven. On Monday, we had a vaccination drive, where more than 500 people were vaccinated, including our retail staff. Almost everyone in the staff has been administered at least one dose of the vaccine,” said Shobha Sengupta, president of the South Point Condominium Association and owner of Quill and Canvas Bookstore and Art Gallery.

“The closure has impacted the business community, but people have found ways and means of circumventing, like takeaways. Even at Quill and Canvas, we have been delivering our products. The authorspeak sessions, which we normally conduct at our store, are being held online,” she said.

Malls in Gurgaon were permitted to reopen after five weeks of closure on May 31.

As per the latest orders from the District Magistrate, malls are currently permitted to open from 10 am to 8 pm. Restaurants and bars in malls, however, are allowed to open from 10 am to 10 pm “with 50% of the seating capacity and adopting requisite social distancing norms”.


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