Video shows how the new one way system at Luton's The Mall will work
The Mall Luton has put the new measures in place to ensure the safety of shoppers
Shoppers heading to The Mall tomorrow (Monday) will have to follow a new one way system and there will also be a new traffic light system to let customers know when they need to queue to enter the shopping centre.
From tomorrow (Monday) non-essential retail can begin to trade again and The Mall Luton has put the new measures in place to ensure the safety of shoppers.
Nearly all entrances to the centre will be open from Monday, with separate entrance and exit doors to maintain social distancing.
The Bute street access (by Halifax) will become exit only, due to space constraints. The entrance to the Thistle Hotel will remain closed until the venue re-opens.
A one-way system will guide shoppers to turn left when exiting shops and follow the arrow markers on the floor.
A new traffic light system will provide shoppers with a guide on how busy the centre is.
Managers at the centre will use footfall technology to manage capacity and instigate green, amber or red alerts.
Roy Greening, general manager of The Mall, said: "Green means the centre is free flowing, with no queues to enter the centre – a good time to shop.
“Moving to amber means the centre is approaching capacity and visitors need to queue before being able to come in to the centre.
"Red means the centre has reached capacity and visitors will be required to queue outside until such time that we can safely allow them in.”
The traffic light status will be updated on the centre’s Facebook page and customers are urged to check there for the most up to date status before they visit.
Lavinia Douglass, marketing manager at The Mall, said: "It's a very robust plan and I think we have covered off every eventuality and we have also looked at capacity as to where we are normally and talked to our retailers about what they expect from their trade."
"We hope that everything we have in place is robust and we know that we can manage the lockdown of the centre, as and when we do reach capacity.
"We are confident that we have a strong plan and we can guarantee a safe and secure shopping visit.
"When it gets to red the idea that is that we will have officers and staff located in each zone of the shopping centre throughout the day, as soon as we get an alert that it's at 75 per cent of our capacity, we then start to monitor it very closely and we can then react very quickly and deploy staff to each set of doors.
"They will then lock down entrances, exits will remain open, and they will control people coming in and out of the centre at that stage.
"We have a footfall tracking system to monitor the footfall in the shopping centre that we always use, and all of the traffic light system has been built into that.
"So we have a new app on all The Mall management's phones and it will alert us by text and email every time we get to 75 per cent of our set capacity figure and when we get to 90 per cent as well.
"I think, generally, people understand and have got used to social distancing measures and have been patient enough to queue and we haven't had many issues.
"I think the local community has been quite understanding and we hope that will continue moving forward, now that people are quite used to that.
"It has been a busy period for us, trying to prepare and get all of the signage ready and out and putting the plans in place and managing all the risk assessments and health and safety side of the business and liaise with the council and environmental health, but we are confident that all the work we have done will put us in a good place next week."