Tuesday 17 November
Meadowland’s shopping plaza
The retail sector’s commitment to assisting local businesses recover from the struggling economy is becoming increasingly evident as more Auckland retail property owners are investing capital back into local developments.
Howick shopping complex – Meadowland’s Shopping Plaza – was recently bought by private investors who have the revitalisation of the plaza on their agenda.
Originally built in 1993, the plaza – located at 112 Whitford Road - will undergo a gradual transformation in the coming months, with the new owners contributing money to improve the facilities for the surrounding district, and to prompt a community atmosphere.
The fresh changes are designed to prompt public awareness for the convenience-driven plaza, and to provide loyal local patrons with new shopping inspiration.
Property manager, William Li, says the owner of the complex has a long term commitment to improving the centre.
“The owners have a real community focus; their aim is to make a convenient and safe shopping environment for the local precinct,” says Li.
“The aim is to develop the plaza into a hybrid between two themes - convenience, variety and fast-service delivery, balanced with a relaxing pleasant environment in which patrons can stay a while and enjoy the friendly atmosphere.”
Bayleys Property Services took over the management of the property in March this year, and implemented a different operational strategy which is orientated around cost efficiency, and allows money to be better utilised and reinvested back into the mall.
According to Li, the improvement plans for the complex include landscaping the gardens, updating the security system, remarking the car parks and directional arrows, upgrading the trolley bays, toilet facilities and signage – with many other improvements in the pipeline that will consistently be carried out through the next two years.
As apart of the complex upgrade and refurbishing, the owners are ensuring tenants are of quality, deliver an appealing balance of different good and services on offer.
“We are focussed on getting the right mix and quality of tenant. Each retailer must create a friendly welcoming environment with high quality goods and fit out,” says Li.
Bayleys Manukau consultant Rachael Pittaway says the mall currently has some sought after spaces available for lease.
“There is a prime corner space positioned at the front of the complex - with high exposure to the car park, road, and shop entrance with large signage opportunities, as well as other spaces under 50 square metres, and a small office,” says Pittaway.
According to Pittaway, the complex receives high patronage daily due to recently the renovated and well established Woolworths, and with the mall being positioned on Whitford Road with more than 30,000 cars passing every day.
“There is already a lot of regular foot traffic through the plaza due to Woolworths, and this has increased three percent in the six months since the improvements have started,” says Pittaway.
“There are several other significant quality tenants in the complex that ensure regular foot traffic - such as the National Bank, Amcal Pharmacy, and the New Zealand Automobile Association, which is the only AA in the Eastern suburbs,” says Pittaway.
Pittaway says professional businesses such as accountants or lawyers could easily slot into the existing office which was used for the property managers and will be soon refurbished into a standard office. Elsewhere throughout the mall, quality cafes or food retailers, and any other retailers with superior products or services are being sought to take advantage of the refurbished premises.
The mall has a total capacity for 23 retailers, comprising of a total lettable area of 5,367 metres squared, with Woolworths occupying 3,421.08 metres squared.