Second Woolies for Dickson as construction starts on DKSN Stage 2

Ian Bushnell 18 December 2020 39
DKSN Stage 2

An artist’s impression of DKSN Stage 2, including the Woolworths Metro store and ”eat street”. Images: Supplied.

Dickson will have another Woolworths supermarket with developers of the final stage of the DKSN mixed-use urban renewal project securing the retail giant as a tenant.

Construction has officially started on the $160 million project, which will include a smaller-scale Woolworths Metro store, the second to be opened in Canberra.

The Dickson supermarket is one of the busiest in Canberra and with the expected population increase in the Northbourne area, there will be increasing demand for retail.

Pitched as the first ‘full-offering’ precinct on Canberra’s light-rail corridor, DKSN will boast a mix of amenities including restaurants and cafes, a 90-space childcare facility, a large medical centre, the supermarket and a gym, all organised around a network of pedestrian laneways and green plazas.

Being developed on the site of the former Dickson Motor Registry, the project’s final stage includes 205 apartments, 4,600 square metres of commercial office space and 4,700 square metres of retail space including a bustling ‘eat street’.

The completed Stage 1 of the DKSN precinct includes 102 apartments and a 13,200 square metre ACT Government office now occupied with various commercial tenancies in the final stage of fit-out.

Wider view of the DKSN Stage 2

A wider view of the DKSN Stage 2 development.

Englobo group director John Susa says the commencement of construction on the final stage of the project reflects strong demand for residential apartments and commercial space.

“Demand has exceeded our expectations with strong interest in Stage 2 apartments triggering the commencement of construction,” he said.

“In addition, we’re seeing demand from a mix of great commercial tenants who see the potential for this precinct to develop into a vibrant hub.

“I’m incredibly pleased to confirm that Woolworths have confirmed their intention to open a Woolworths Metro store and this adds to a very strong line-up of hospitality and service-based businesses who will call DKSN home.”


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DOMA Group general manager development Gavin Edgar said the demand for residential apartments had been particularly strong over recent months and credits the Australian Government’s HomeBuilder program with stimulating confidence in the market.

“Enquiry for apartments at DKSN has outstripped our expectations with around 50 per cent of the final stage sold in recent months,” he said.

“We’re seeing around half of all purchasers using the HomeBuilder program to smooth their entry to homeownership.

“I think it’s fair to say that in this case a strong product and this additional support from the government has combined to deliver a very strong outcome which has seen us move to the construction phase sooner than what may have otherwise been possible.”

First-home buyer Dominic De Marco moved into DKSN a few months ago and says the location and plans for a mixed-use precinct together with current incentives made the choice easy.

“I’ve been looking at getting into the market for a while and when I saw what was planned at DKSN I knew I wanted to be part of it,” he said.

“Dickson has always had appeal to me but the amenity offered in the DKSN precinct itself and its proximity to transport links and the city really sold me.”


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39 Responses to Second Woolies for Dickson as construction starts on DKSN Stage 2
George Watling George Watling 12:42 pm 01 Jan 21

The reality is it doesn't matter how convenient high density living is when it comes to getting a coffee from a shop down stairs or walking to an office job, or whether the buildings are 4 or 44 stories high.

The government approved high density infill of Canberra’s garden suburbs including Dickson is fundamentally bad for people and the environment.

Along Dooring, Morphett, Stockdale, and Randell Streets and Madura Avenue duplexes and houses with gardens and shade trees are being bulldozed and replaced with fence to fence apartment complexes (see attached down shot).

In these environments residents end up living in a sea of hard surfaces with:

+ far fewer trees, green spaces, and cool surfaces then they need to maintain good physical and mental health,

+ very high temperatures in summer that increase the risk of heat stroke and stress for residents as the hard surfaces around them absorb solar radiation and become very hot,

+ increased air conditioning costs and greenhouse gas emissions as people have to run their air-conditioners for longer,

+ reduced privacy and access to sunlight as higher density buildings look and overshadow each other and existing homes.

+ increased noise and light pollution,

+ reduced air quality,

+ little or no contact with the local wildlife.

I am not against apartment living per say but more attention needs to be given to the development model the government is allowing especially as we face increased heatwaves. It would be better to have more high rise apartments built around town centres then have a wholesale takeover of our leafy suburbs by fence to fence developments.

Darron Marks Darron Marks 8:13 am 24 Dec 20

Why a second Woolworths ?

It is to freeze out competition this area is obviously very lucrative so they wish to make sure no competition can offer an alternative.

This is not good for the area and it is not good for competition so it will be reflected in high prices for local consumers. This is why you need stronger laws against this kind of behaviour.

    Ashley Wright Ashley Wright 5:00 pm 24 Dec 20

    Darron Marks it’s a small one in an apartment building.

    It won’t lock out another major supermarket opening in the main shopping centre. It’s filling a niche market.

JC JC 3:48 pm 23 Dec 20

So many whinging and complaining about planning failures.

Two simple facts, the new supermarket is a small one in one of the apartment buildings and the style of it will only suit those that live in said developments. There is a new Woolworths at Belconnen in a similar vane it is not intended to be a replacement for the existing one and for the most part is of not much use to anyone who lives in the adjacent blocks.

Fact two Dickson needs another major supermarket the appropriate place for that is in the shopping centre not on the apartment buildings. One or two were planned but of course vested interests have delayed and substantially changed that development.

Threads like this go to show that no matter what happens people will whinge and call it a planning failure.

William Fisher William Fisher 12:48 pm 23 Dec 20

Charlie Yeates 2 woolies 1 Dickson how are you

    Maddie Howes Maddie Howes 6:48 pm 23 Dec 20

    Maddie Stillman we can’t leave the holy grail dicky now

Frankie Rossettin Frankie Rossettin 9:56 am 22 Dec 20

One Woolies for the Houso Bogans and one for the Hipsters......

Brendon D'Aquino Brendon D'Aquino 12:49 am 22 Dec 20

Another woolies for the junkies to hang around.......great.

Nikki Sullivan Nikki Sullivan 11:02 pm 21 Dec 20

Jasmine Amy this is what I was talking about last week

Chris Emery Chris Emery 6:53 pm 21 Dec 20

What happened to the promised ALDI?

    Brent Hutch Brent Hutch 10:55 pm 21 Dec 20

    Chris Emery ALDI was going into the building that Coles is planning to build on the "Woolies" carpark. ALDI is no longer going in there to my knowledge.

    Narelle O'Rourke Narelle O'Rourke 1:20 pm 22 Dec 20

    Aldi pulled out

Jemma Sbeg Jemma Sbeg 5:13 pm 21 Dec 20

Ingrid Ariana Erin Oscar just what the doctor ordered

Matthew Stewart Matthew Stewart 10:10 am 21 Dec 20

The first one was so good, let’s do it again? Nuts.

Nada Stanković Nada Stanković 10:09 am 21 Dec 20

Dusanka Stankovic looking good 🙂

Valerie Foster Valerie Foster 8:58 am 21 Dec 20

How much overkill two woolies.

Marissa Parel Marissa Parel 8:18 am 21 Dec 20

Xiao Lin King huge news

Isabelle Vu Isabelle Vu 1:47 am 21 Dec 20

Jaydan Thorpe why do y’all need two 😭😭😭

    Jaydan Thorpe Jaydan Thorpe 10:03 am 21 Dec 20

    Isabelle Vu whattt. Why would they waste that space. Put restaurants or something.

Dave Parks Dave Parks 10:26 pm 20 Dec 20

Why do they need another woolies at Dickson though!!!!???? They should just add more car parks there!!.

    Rob Thomas Rob Thomas 1:03 am 21 Dec 20

    You'd like that wouldn't you Mr.Parks? You've clearly got a vested interest in more car parks!

    Shane Morton Shane Morton 12:17 pm 21 Dec 20

    Big parking over here influencing developments

Rainer Busacker Rainer Busacker 9:22 pm 20 Dec 20

Whatever happened to the other planned expansion at the Dickson shops that included Aldi?

David Conway David Conway 8:23 pm 20 Dec 20

Is this so you don’t get mugged like at the original woolies

    Margaret Freemantle Margaret Freemantle 9:08 pm 20 Dec 20

    David Conway must be- no one is doing anything to address the problems and ugliness of Woolies

Rolando Ochoa Rolando Ochoa 7:28 pm 20 Dec 20

Two woolies and about 7 grog shops in a 5 km radius. Great planning!!

Cheryl Thuillier Cheryl Thuillier 7:08 pm 20 Dec 20

Really!!! What a joke.

George Watling George Watling 7:05 pm 20 Dec 20

There is Coles in the Canberra Centre. But having two Woolies at Dickson just tells you what a high density hell the place will be once they are finished. The government is turning Dickson into a second Civic Centre.

    Saji Titus Saji Titus 9:31 pm 20 Dec 20

    George Watling All those votes for the Greens wasted. As if they were going to stop this madness

    Brent Hutch Brent Hutch 9:44 pm 20 Dec 20

    The "madness" of being able to live close to your work, shops and cafes etc... Yeah, much better clearing more land and having people commute long distances 🤷

    George Watling George Watling 12:39 am 22 Dec 20

    Brent Hutch You can do all that living in houses and townhouses in the suburbs around one of Canberra's five existing town centers. You don't have to have these super high density developments to make a city liveable. I have lived in suburbs around 4 out of 5 of these town centers and I've never had more than a 15 to 25 minutes commute to work and I have quite often lived and worked on opposite sides of Canberra.

    You only get high levels of congestion and long commute times when government planning allows a high concentration of enterprises in a central local/CBD. Canberra's decentralized multi town centers model was developed and implemented to avoid these problems.

    Regarding clearing more land. The hyper densification of the inner north won’t save any land from clearing. The ACT Labor/Green's government have already committed to filling the whole of the Molongolo valley with micro-block high density developments. If the government promised to set aside 30 - 40% of the valley as nature reserves and wildlife corridors then I would be more likely to support the mass warehousing of people in apartments around Dickson and other town centers but that not what's happening. The government has approved the clearing of the whole valley and still what to pack another 80,000 new homes into existing suburbs. It not for our or natures benefit they are doing that. It to extend the rate payer base and keep the construction industry alive even through population growth is low and demand for new multi-unit dwellings are dropping.

    Brent Hutch Brent Hutch 1:24 am 22 Dec 20

    George Watling

    1. Sure, you can live in and around town centres in houses and townhouses. Do you not agree though, that you will require more land to fit the same number of people in? If you fit more people in, close to the amenity they seek, do you not agree that this reduces their need to commute.

    2. You're not the only person who has lived in the suburbs and commuted to work. In previous existences, my commute was 15 minutes, sometimes it was 40minutes. Nothing quite like sitting there on the GDE looking at those single occupant vehicles bumper to bumper. My current walk to work is 8minutes. I know what I prefer. But you know the best thing, other people benefit too... I've removed a vehicle they would be competing for road and car parking space.

    3. The "hyper densification won't save any land"... Makes zero sense. See point 1. If the people aren't being housed in "super dense" apartments, there would be increased demand on land which will come from further out. Increased higher density, slows this. It also means that people who don't want to live in a house out in the burbs, are not competing with someone who does.

    4. The thing they are building in Dickson is like 6 stories... This is not "super high density". It is appropriate development for its location. If people did not want to live in these things, they wouldn't be built. Developers are the opposite of generous and are money motivated... This requires sales.

    5. "Canberra's decentralised multi town centres"... You mean the things dominated by inward focused concrete shopping malls. Leading to ghost towns at night time. Actually getting people to live in town centres, is a good thing and is where density belongs.

    6. Extending the rate base and employing people... Seems smart.

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