Mixed reaction to new Woolworths

Construction is under way on a new Woolworths at Cabarita.
Construction is under way on a new Woolworths at Cabarita. John Gass

WITH the construction of a new Woolworths complex at Cabarita Beach in full swing, many local business owners are concerned over the impact it will have on trade.

A Woolworths spokesperson has, however, pointed out that it will bring a boost for local employment.

The Caba Bakehouse has its doors open for customers from before sunrise to long after sunset.

Its owner feels the bakery will lose a lot of trade to Woolworths.

"The construction will impact heavily on the local economy from a small business perspective," she said.

Owner of The Blue Rose Cafe Bruce Miller said he could see the pros and cons of the development.

"Personally, I think it's great," he said.

"But as a cafe, I won't be affected as much as other businesses such as the bakery and the butcher.

"It will be good for some and bad for others.

"I'm sure our milkman will be greatly affected if Woolworths sells cut-price milk."

Milk vendor Richard Griffith said all businesses would be affected by the new shopping centre.

"We will all feel the pinch," he said.

"Big companies like Woolworths put little back into the town.

"You have to ask how much is going back into the community as it does with small family businesses."

Cabarita resident Carla Rayworth said the complex which includes a string of shops would "ruin the village atmosphere."

Fellow resident Renee Gibson takes her children to the childcare centre behind the Woolworth's site in Hastings Road.

"With a big, new car park and increased traffic, I'm really concerned about child safety," she said.

Staff at the Cabarita butcher shop say they want to be positive about the development.

"It could be great for the town, especially for the elderly who don't drive," one staff member said.

"There's good and bad in everything.

"But I do worry about the increased traffic flow and its impact on an already faulty pedestrian crossing.

"It could get very hectic in Cabarita."

He said there was already 10 empty shops in the seaside town.

"I wonder why the developers would build more.

"But perhaps it will bring more people in and help the local economy.

"Time will tell."

A Woolworths spokesperson said development was progressing well and would bring jobs.

"We are on track to open in the first half of 2013," she said.

"The site will include a 2500sqm supermarket, around eight specialty retail stores, a BWS and a basement car park.

"Between 100-120 positions will be created during construction with a further 120 available for the local community post construction.

"The centre will deliver a convenient shopping destination for the local community with great value and choice.

"The new shopping supermarket and shopping centre will help keep shoppers and spending in Cabarita and we've spoken with a number of local small businesses who fullysupport it."

Topics:  cabarita woolworths

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