Private sector developers could be invited to breathe new life into some of Birmingham's under-performing suburban shopping centres.
The strategy is being considered as a response to a city council study showing that almost one-third of retail areas outside of the city centre are struggling to survive.
The study warned that many small traders were losing business to superstores.
Ken Hardeman, cabinet member for regeneration, said he was considering packaging together three or four local centres with a view to inviting bids from developers.
He was not prepared to discuss possible candidates, but centres identified in the study as suffering from high vacancy levels included Stirchley, Sparkbrook, Lozells Road, Frankley, Selly Oak, Villa Road, Witton and Hay Mills.
Coun Hardeman (Con Brandwood) added: "One of the ideas I am exploring is looking at whether some of the failing centres or the not so active centres might be grouped together as a package to offer to private investors to come in and develop."
Other ideas under consideration include the development of Business Improvement Districts, where traders agree to pay additional rates to the council in return for guaranteed environmental and security improvements. Plans for a BID covering Erdington shopping centre are being discussed.
The local shopping centres study showed that much of suburban Birmingham is not meeting the council's minimum retail standards.
These are that all households should be within a five-minute drive or a ten-minute bus trip of a large foodstore and no more than 500 yards away from a local convenience store.