THE proposed $110 million expansion of Stockland Wendouree has been shelved for now, but remains on a “future projects register”.
A major redevelopment incorporating a new supermarket and discount department store, public plaza and forecourt and relocated Wendouree Library was announced in June 2012.
But work has not started, with most of the houses acquired by Stockland for demolition now leased to tenants.
One house is currently advertised for a new lease.
Stockland has received development approval for the project with a planning scheme amendment signed off by Planning Minister Matthew Guy in February 2013.
However, Stockland media relations manager Greg Spears said at the company’s half-year results in February it confirmed the Wendouree shopping centre was listed as a future project.
“We have a number of large scale projects under way across Australia, but we have not yet confirmed a date for the commencement of our construction at Wendouree,” Mr Spears said.
“We will continue our planning process and we will continue to provide updates to customers, retailers and council on our future plans for Wendouree Shopping Centre.”
A report considered by the council in May 2012 assumed construction could begin in November 2013 and be completed by March 2015.
The first full financial year of trading for the expanded centre would have been 2015-16.
Another town planning report forecast the expanded Stockland Wendouree to record total sales of $220.3 million in the first full year of trading – an increase of $43.3 million compared to the no change scenario.
City of Ballarat chief executive officer Anthony Schinck said the council remained completely supportive of Stockland’s investment in the redevelopment of its Wendouree site.
“It’s widely acknowledged this is a challenging time for retail and major investment, and we are aware that Stockland are also committed to a number of other developments across the country,” Mr Schinck said.
“Based on our relationship with Stockland, we remain optimistic about the potential for this development over the medium to long-term.
“This is exactly the reason that announcements like the VicRoads relocation are important to Ballarat in providing direct injection into the city’s economy to support growth and development.”