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Coles graduates to University Hill

MAB Corporation has secured Coles Supermarkets as the anchor tenant for the convenience-based retail offer at its $1 billion University Hill development.

Expected to open around Easter 2007, the 3,700 sqm, full-line Coles Supermarket will act as the cornerstone for a retail mix comprising fresh food; takeaway food; cafes and restaurants; personal, banking and health services; and, a discount brand fashion and homewares outlet centre – Brand Junction.

MAB’s Senior Retail Development Manager, Mr Mark O’Connell, said the retail giant had signed up to University Hill because the development successfully catered for consumers seeking a street-based shopping offer to match their changing lifestyles.

“Consumers are increasingly looking to do their shopping in what has traditionally served as a community hub and meeting place,” Mr O’Connell said.

“They desire the individuality provided in main street retailing as well as the social interactions, while undertaking their everyday shopping.

“The University Hill development is able to meet this growing lifestyle trend.”

A key factor for any retailer in considering where to locate an outlet is the available expenditure and the potential growth of the expenditure in the trade area.

“Our research forecasts that the current available expenditure for University Hill’s estimated trade area is anticipated to grow by a healthy 25 percent in the first 10 years,” Mr O’Connell said.

“For the first time, the City of Whittlesea will be able to offer its residents a fully planned street based, quality fashion, homewares and convenience retail mix making it a fresh and desirable place for local people to spend their time.”

Residents of University Hill and neighbouring suburbs will be the major beneficiaries of MAB Corporation’s proven experience of building high quality, urban living and working environments, such as NewQuay at Melbourne’s Docklands.

“Residents in the area have made a lifestyle choice to live in the suburbs, but they still want to enjoy the same benefits as inner urban dwellers,” Mr O’Connell said.

“They want to be able to dine out at quality casual restaurants and cafes, shop at fashionable stores, do their banking and have their hair done all at the one place – but with the individuality you only find at shopping strips such as Brunswick Street, Lygon Street or Bridge Road.

“At University Hill we have taken from the best elements of the urban environment and put it together in a less congested suburban way.

“We have created a unique retail mix of businesses in a never-before seen urban environment in response to our customers’ needs in the City of Whittlesea.

“Along with Coles we have secured a major international health and beauty retailer and pharmacist along with a long standing restaurateur from St. Kilda.

“We have already leased 70 percent of the retail precinct because of our commitment to ensuring we meet the aspirations and demands of the community.

“We see, from our research, that there is a growing trend amongst communities for local street based shopping precincts.

“Our customers may live 20 kilometres from Melbourne, but they still wish to enjoy the best aspects of urban living such as convenient access to shops, on-street parking and unique retailers in a state-of-the-art designed environment.

When complete, University Hill will ultimately cater for up to 1,100 homes. The development will also generate more than 3,500 jobs for people who live in the City of Whittlesea.

MAB Corporation is an established developer in Australia and continues to deliver innovative, high quality commercial, residential and industrial developments since 1995.

The company currently has $1.5 billion in projects completed or commenced including the $1 billion landmark NewQuay development, National Business Park, Global Business Park, Northcorp Industry Park, Translink Business Park and a host of other award winning developments.

With a proven track record in the design and delivery of award winning developments, MAB Corporation is perfectly placed to deliver a new generation of retail shopping at University Hill.