New mall takes shape

2010-07-14 00:00

LOCAL residents will be spoilt for choice when the city’s second major mall complex opens its doors in Edendale before the end of next year.

The Witness can confirm that the property developers have already received signed offers from a number of well-established anchor retailers that are likely to go down well with locals.

Included among the 42 retailers who have already handed their signed offers over to the developers are clothing giants Truworths, Identity, Woolworths, Jet and Legit.

This confirmation came from Jason McCormick, who spoke on behalf of the develo­pers.

He said they also expect popular clothing retailer Mr Price to come on board “pending [one] more signature of a director who is abroad”.

Two more major clothing merchants in the form of Pep and Ackermans will also soon be brought to the table. “Both have all terms settled, and [we] expect the signed offer this week”.

The listed dealers represent just some of the clothing stores that will be housed in the mall, and shoppers can expect a total of 15 clothing stores once the mall is fully functional.

The three grocery retailers that have been confirmed as tenants are Shoprite, Pick n Pay and Roots Butchery.

Banking services have not been overlooked, with Capitec Bank, African Bank, Old Mutual Finance and two ATM lobbies forming part of the mall.

In terms of fast-food merchants, some of the country’s most popular franchises have been secured. Debonairs, Chicken Licken and King Pie are just three of the six fast-food joints that customers will be able to choose from.

The developers are also chasing fast-food king Nando’s. This deal is pending.

Furniture shops in the form of Beares, Joshua Doore and Russells will also feature, as will two hair salons. Two liquor stores, a jewellery shop and a tombstone retailer have also been confirmed.

Only two floor spaces are still available for leasing, with one falling under the furniture category and the other under services.

McCormick said: “The brands that I have given you have all provided us with signed offers (apart from the pending ones that we expect this week). These offers have to be approved by the respective groups’ boards of directors, and we anticipate this happening by the end of July.”

He added that receiving signed offers does not necessarily mean that the brands are committed, but the developers are confident that the respective boards will approve the signed offers.

 

“The only issue may be that they would want to change some of the terms and conditions of the offers [such as rental or escalations],” said McCormick.

Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business (PCB) chief executive officer Andrew Layman said that the idea of a mall that serves Edendale is long overdue.

“We have been advocating for economic development in Edendale for many years.”

He said the development is extremely important for the area.

“Edendale once had a thriving CBD of its own and it’s necessary to have that revival — and the mall will be the first step towards having that revived,” said Layman.

Ward councillor Pat Jaca said the demolition of Qokololo Stadium, which started two weeks ago, is moving ahead swiftly, even though there is still quite a bit to do.

The revamping of the nearby Ashdown Stadium will compensate sports lovers for the loss of Qokololo Stadium, which is to be replaced by the mall.

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