For numerous reasons, now is the precisely the wrong time to think of opening up a new business at a tube station. But should this ever be something you've always wanted to do, or if you simply fancy poking round a portfolio of TfL's commercial assets, here's your chance.
TfL have a website, tfl.completelygroup.com, where they display a list of kiosks, shops, arches, former ticket offices and all sorts of other spaces available to let. At time of writing it contains 104 properties either To Let or Under Offer, each with its own webpage and downloadable brochure. Let properties do not appear, so the full portfolio is much broader than this.
Here are ten interesting ones - you can dig for more.
First up, a pair of classics.
Unit 5, Piccadilly Circus Underground Station(To Let, 48 sq ft, £15,000 pa)
This unit forms part of a parade of shops within Piccadilly Circus Underground station. The unit occupies a prominent location within the station adjacent to exit 2. There is no water or drainage in the unit and it is currently vacant. [brochure]
District and Circle Line Ticket Hall Unit, Victoria Underground Station(Under Offer, 203 sq ft, £40,000 pa)
Situated within the District and Circle Line ticket hall, the unit is the sole retail offering in one of the ticket halls in a high footfall transport hub. The unit offers a large retail space with a simple configuration and is visible from the ticket barriers and the main station entrance. The unit sits adjacent to one of the staircases leading into the ticket hall from street level and benefits from an open entrance which fronts onto the ticket hall, secured by roller shutters. This unit does not have water and drainage. [brochure]
Then let's head further out.
167 High Street, Uxbridge Underground Station(Under Offer, 419 sq ft, £20,000 pa)
The unit is prominently situated within the station entrance on the left side before entering through the ticket barriers. The unit is in good condition and suitable for a broad range of A1 retail uses. The unit has a front and rear shutter for both access points. (also available, number 168) [brochure]
Ex-Station Office, Colliers Wood Underground Station(Under Offer, 440 sq ft, £22,000pa)
The unit adjoins Colliers Wood underground station, with frontage onto Christchurch Road. The area is largely residential, with the existing retail offering on the high street providing local amenities such as estate agencies, fast food, mini cab offices and a convenience store. The unit benefits from power, water and drainage. [brochure]
Parsons Green offers both tiny and huge.
Kiosk in Ticket Hall, Parsons Green Station(To Let, 33 sq ft, £15,000 pa)
The subject unit is the only retail offering within Parsons Green Underground Station and is situated immediately in front of the ticket barriers before you exit the station. The unit has a countertop from which customers can be served. The unit benefits from power and would be suited to a dry use operator. There is no water or drainage. Parsons Green is an affluent area of South West London, with a mixture of independent and high street retailers in close proximity to the station. [brochure]
Unit 8B, Parsons Green Depot, Parsons Green Station(To Let, 5683 sq ft, £142,075 pa)
The property comprises a warehouse/industrial unit of steel truss frame construction with brick elevations and benefits from a height to the underside of the truss of 4.2m rising to 9m at the apex. Parsons Green Depot is located off Parsons Green Lane, adjacent to the London Underground District Line. The site previously supported the operation of the District Line when it opened in 1880 and is currently occupied by a diverse mix of small businesses. [brochure]
A disused station is available.
Former Station Building, Angel Underground Station(To Let, 4500 sq ft, £tbc)
The property comprises part of the former station building along with a structure which appears to be temporary in nature fronting city road which could be replaced with a permanent solution on a subject to planning basis. The property is prominently located fronting City Road on the corner of Torrens Street, approximately a 1-minute walk from Angel Underground Station in a particularly busy environment. [brochure]
TfL also own a lot of railway arches.
Arches 1-13, Wood Lane Underground Station(To Let, each 800 sq ft approx, "on a turnover basis")
Transport for London are regenerating 31 railway arches to create a destination for eating, socialising, shopping and working. Over the next 10 years five major development projects will deliver 2.3m sq ft of retail, 2.2m sq ft of offices and 5,000 new homes to the area. The Wood Lane Arches are nestled right in the middle of this area, next to the new 230,000 sq ft full-line John Lewis and seconds away from Wood Lane tube station making it the perfect spot for retailers, cafes, restaurants and bars looking to break the mould. [brochure]
Finally here are two properly new retail intrusions.
New Unit in Ticket Hall, Liverpool Street(Under Offer, 1044 sq ft, £150,000pa)
The new retail unit will occupy a very prominent location within the high footfall ticket hall. It will be extremely visible as you enter the ticket hall from the main National Rail concourse and as you exit through the London Underground ticket barriers. The subject unit sits within the main underground ticket hall and will be the conversion of the former ticket office. The configuration of the unit will allow for half of the space to be used for sales whilst the remaining half can be used for storage or kitchen facilities. [brochure]
New Retail Units in Ticket Hall, Oxford Circus Underground Station(Under Offer, 280/150 sq ft, £115,000/£70,000 pa)
Situated opposite the ticket barriers, both new retail units will occupy a prominent position in Oxford Circus Station. The units will benefit from excellent visibility within the ticket hall, which captures all passenger footfall from exits 1-4. The units are located on the unpaid side of the ticket barrier. They will be handed over in shell condition with capped off services and a shop front installed. [brochure]
If the economy ever recovers, maybe give TfL a call.