Slice of shopping heaven planned for Melbourne suburbs
Residents of Melbourne's southeastern suburbs are due to have their shopping horizons broadened.
The Chadstone Shopping Centre has had its $580 million expansion approved, opening the 490-store 'fashion capital' of Australia up to some prime commercial real estate investment. The project will add a revitalised west mall, an extended luxury offer, a new entertainment and leisure precinct in the north and a 10-level 17,000sqm office building at the southern end. These changes will enlarge the centre by 34,000sqm to a whopping 212,000sqm.
"This is an important next step in the evolution of Chadstone," said Angus McNaughton, managing director and CEO of CFS Retail Property Trust Group (CFX). CFX hold 50 per cent ownership of the shopping centre and will fittingly contribute $290 million to the project.
The 11,000sqm northern precinct will house a new Hoyts digital cinema complex, Mr McNaughton outlined, as well as five international flagship stores, 40 more retailers, and a new food gallery which holds 26 restaurants and seats 1,300 diners.
The development will also add a new bus interchange of 14 bays and 800 more parking spaces, meaning a total of 10,000 shoppers will be able to park their cars at the centre.
Demolition and preliminary work is set to start in June, while construction proper will start in September. Shoppers and those investors champing at the bit to secure themselves commercial retail property in the renovated centre can expect it to open by 2017.
Expanded centre will pay dividends for surrounding area
Chadstone is already a major benefit to the local economy. Ranked No. 1 in the country for total sales, it brings in more than 20 million visitors annually and generates sales of more than $1.4 billion. These numbers are likely to magnify thanks to the project.
"This development will further reinforce Chadstone's position as the No. 1 shopping centre in Australia," said Deputy CEO of CFX and Chief Investment Officer Michael Gorman.
CFX is aiming for an initial yield on completion of more than 6 per cent and an internal rate of return of more than 10 per cent.
More than solely a golden opportunity for investors, the expansion will also make the southeastern suburbs of Melbourne and its surrounding area a more attractive, desirable place. Those thinking of buying should keep in mind property prices will likely rise in the area upon completion of the centre, so you may want to get in early. LJ Hooker can help find the right property for you.