Movement on supermarket proposal

Retail competition for IGA in Castlemaine appears to be on the horizon with movement in recent days toward establishment of a new player on the town’s supermarket scene.
A Woolworths brand supermarket is proposed with a new application for a larger supermarket premises and a separate liquor retail outlet lodged by the Lascorp Development Group, which had already gained earlier planning approval for a new supermarket to be established on Forest Street.
Mount Alexander Shire statutory planning coordinator Louise Johnston confirmed Lascorp had now lodged a new application for a larger development – almost double the original size of the store it had proposed initially but otherwise of similar design.
Ms Johnston said that while Lascorp had a valid original permit for a store of about 1500 square metres it had now lodged a new application for a store of approximately 3400 square metres, plus a liquor store.
The proposal also features an underground car park.
And the new application also relates to an additional block of land adjacent to the original site that had already gained planning approval for a supermarket – at the intersection of Castlemaine’s Urquhart and Forest Streets.
Work at this additional prominent site in recent days included the demolition of two houses, while on Friday workers were busy disconnecting gas at the site in conjunction with earthworks and traffic control around the area.
The new proposal is expected to ultimately go before council for a decision with the public advertising and notification period now commencing and the opportunity for objectors to lodge objections.
The application, PA054/2019, may be viewed online via the council’s Greenlight website or in person at the council’s offices.
“It’s essentially the same design but for a larger footprint,” Ms Johnston said.
“It’s not for an Aldi store. It’s for a Woolworths.”
But Lascorp’s national development manager Rob Harris was yesterday tight-lipped about the proposal.
“We really don’t comment until council deals with it,” he said.
“It’s with the authority. If we get a positive result then we’re happy to deal with it.”
Mr Harris said he did not know whether the matter would end up going before a council meeting for a planning decision.
“I honestly don’t know.
“We’ve certainly lodged an application. It’s being dealt with at officer level is what I know,” he said.
“It’s a council process now.”

One thought on “Movement on supermarket proposal

  • July 11, 2019 at 9:26 pm

    Competition is healthy! The people of Castlemaine want and need a change. Living here with the rising food prices is becoming impossible, particularly for aged pensioners. Many travel to Bendigo for their food requirements. Castlemaine council have had it their way for too long, blocking every new proposal by interested parties. A change has to be more than considered and is inevitable.


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