The report, commissioned by the independent retailers' group RGDATA, also predicts a further growth and expects that shopping centre and retail warehouse space will grow by another 40% in the coming years.
The study, compiled by MacCabe, Durney & Barnes Consulting, shows that retail space in the Republic of Ireland has grown during the past five years from 400,000 sq.m to 1.5 million sq.m.
"This would be enough space to create 188 stadiums the size of Croke Park," a GAA fan among the consultants remarked.
As a major reason for this massive growth in shopping and warehouse space the consultants identified the expansion of the two German supermarket chains Aldi and Lidl into Ireland. They have opened 135 new stores in the country since 2000, providing not only many new jobs, but bringing for the first time in decades real competition - and thus greater choice and lower prices - to the Irish retail market.
In comparison, the British supermarket giant Tesco, which is losing market shares in Ireland in recent years, has opened only 22 new stores here since 1997.
The Emerald Islander