Corrimal’s growing town centre could soon have a new multi-storey retail and residential building atop one of its most run-down blocks, if plans to install an Aldi and childcare centre complex at Underwood Street are approved.
The four-storey development would replace the town’s derelict former Mitre 10 site, and include a 1500-square-metre Aldi supermarket, 49 apartments, a 122-place childcare centre and 171 car spaces.
Plans lodged with Wollongong City Council by Think Planners on behalf of Mintus Properties note the site – at the corner of Underwood and Russell street and Bertram Lane – has been vacant for years, and has fallen into a state of disrepair.
The application says the existing building is a safety hazard, detracts from the town’s street scape and limits the “vibrancy, viability and overall economic performance of the [Corrimal] town centre”.
“The development aims to present a strong and attractive interface that addresses the site’s prominent corner location [while] improving street level activation and legibility of the area for pedestrians and residents,” documents now on exhibition said.
“[It] will ensure that the north-western portion of the town centre will be a vibrant place with a variety of commercial uses to service the needs of the surrounding established residential areas.
“Furthermore, the proposal will also increase housing opportunity and housing mix within the town centre by 49 residential units of varying sizes and types.”
The application has proposed four one-bedroom, 41 two-bedroom and four three-bedroom units.
Four smaller retail tenancies to “activate” the street, the application said.
The childcare centre would operate from 7am to 6pm on weekdays and would be run by Big Fat Smiles, according to the application.
News of the proposed development was welcomed by many Fairfax Media readers last week, with dozens jumping online to voice their approval.
For instance, Julie Pallas said it was the “best idea ever”, while Sandra Shephard said it would “give Woolies and Coles a run for [their] money”.
“Building looks brilliant,” reader Graham Mercer said. “Corrimal needs to be rid of the eyesore on that site.”
Central Corrimal has been pegged for urban renewal for years, with a draft Wollongong City Council strategy released earlier this year proposing an art-filled, leafy, pedestrian safe haven with a higher population and a better variety of retail outlets and services.
Development application documents for the Aldi proposal will be on exhibition though the council’s website until October 21.