15 November 2021

Second Koko Molonglo supermarket plans lodged, but will it be an Aldi?

| Ian Bushnell
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Koko Molonglo supermarket

An artist’s impression of the second Koko Molonglo supermarket. Image: Oztal Architects.

Plans for the second supermarket in the Koko Molonglo development in Wright have been released, but whether Coles or Aldi will operate it remains unknown.

A Woolworths Metro store is already locked in for the first of the two 1500 square metre supermarkets, and the betting is on Aldi to fill the other slot.

The plans do not show any supermarket logos or livery.

A view from the travelator

A view from the travelator.

The $3.67 million project will be developed on Lease G and E fronting Gornall Street and sitting behind the approved multi-storey Stage 1 of the Koko development that faces John Gorton Drive, containing the Woolworths Metro.

The single-level building is connected to multiple underground levels via stairs, a lift and a travelator, and a bridge to the Stage 1 residential units.

It integrates with lower-level commercial tenancies facing Gornall Street, which were approved as part of Stage 1.

The plans show a landscaped communal place in the northern corner of the site and include a grassed area, planters, trees and seating.

There are seven short-stay car parks outside the building, but 77 long-stay spaces are provided below in the undercroft car park and there is a staircase to the Woolworths parking below that. Access to the site will be from Gornall Street.

View from the short-stay car park

A view from the short-stay car park.

The loading dock and back of house warehouse will be on the southern Gornall Street side of the site.

The traffic study says the supermarket will generate 69 vehicles per hour in the morning and afternoon peaks.

The DA says the supermarket will operate from 6 am to midnight seven days a week and trade 7 am to 9 pm every day, with unrestricted loading hours, or a minimum of 7 am to 10 pm every day.

It brings more shopping facilities a step closer for the growing Molonglo community, especially Coombs and Wright, which is struggling with a lack of services and relies on Cooleman Court in nearby Weston. In turn, it’s been placing extra pressure on the Weston Group Centre’s facilities and parking.

Landscaped communal space

The landscaped communal space.

Two 1500 square metre supermarkets across the road from the unoccupied Coombs shops, which originally could only cater for a 1000 square metre supermarket as its anchor tenant, also threatens to confirm that facility as a white elephant, despite planning rule changes last May that will allow a bigger supermarket on the site.

Molonglo Valley Community Forum convenor Ryan Hemley said it was good to see more shops planned for the Molonglo Valley, especially when the main Commercial Centre was still many years away and the Coombs shops remained largely vacant.

“There is a lot of excitement about the possibility of this supermarket being an Aldi. If this does turn out to be the case, it will offer more choice for residents and likely relieve some of the pressure at Cooleman Court.”

Canberra developer John Krnc is behind the Koko Molonglo development bounded by John Gorton Drive, Steve Irwin Avenue and Gornall Street, and is being developed in stages. Two more are planned.

The DA is open to comments until 1 December.

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Brad McDowell9:59 am 16 Nov 21

The floor plan has all the features and internal layout consistent with an Aldi store

Linda Seaniger12:16 pm 17 Nov 21

It’s about time Coombs got it supermarket. But I hope the ACT government has learnt a valuable lesson in regard to the land release for shops in new areas.
1. Make sure you’re dealing with capable landlords/developers with past experience in similar projects.
2. Make sure it’s a viable supermarket size.
3 Whoever approves the DA make sure they look at the design is it modern is it functional? The Existing Coombs shops look like something out of the 1960s/70s and was functionally obsolete from the start.
4.Is too large supermarkets a good idea given that the Coombs group centre will be only down the road less than 2 kilometres. We don’t want to kill Cooleman Court or the supermarket in Denman prospect we want them all to trade successfully. Does the Act government employ any Town Planners? Perhaps we Should have just fast tracked the Coombs group shopping centre?
So that Western Creek can prosper we really need the Coppins crossing welr to become a bridge especially given that the area is supposed to accommodate 30,000 people by the year 2025. Any progress on this Monumental piece of infrastructure? Which is especially needed if we take the Commonwealth Bridge out of action while we install an archive tram network and traffic lights down the length on Adelaide Avenue.

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