Western Australia Retail Experiencing Revolutionary Shift


Western Australia’s retail landscape is in a state of transformation, with the rise of ‘town centre’ style retail focused on entertainment and experience prompting the demise of the traditional shopping centre.

The major shift in retail trends was covered in CBRE’s latest Viewpoint ‘Western Australia’s retail centre revolution’, which highlights how the sector's transformation is underpinned by State Government reform to floor space caps and a generational shift towards a more experience-focused retail experience.

“Town centre style developments that provide far more than just a retail offering are quite commonplace across the globe, leaving WA with a lot of ground to make up in the wake of the planning reforms,” CBRE Research Manager Gemma Alexander said.

“Such changes will increase WA’s offering to a level comparable with eastern states, and indeed begin to elevate its retail centres to a global standard.”

A number of major refurbishments and extensions are intended for Perth’s major centres, culminating in approximately $2.5 billion worth of construction work over the next five years.

CBRE Director of Retail Services in Western Australia, Richard Cash, said Perth was becoming more competitive at both a domestic and international level amid an underlying shift in the fundamental concept of modern retail.

“Retail has evolved significantly over the past decade – transforming from just a single destination for the purpose of acquiring goods, to providing a more holistic consumer experience encompassing not just a shopping element, but leisure and dining.

"As retailers become sophisticated in their approach to meeting the needs of shoppers – both today and in the future – our shopping centres are also changing face,” Mr Cash said.

“Not only is the how and why of retail changing, but also the when, with many shopping centres looking beyond the traditional 9 – 5 trading hours, to position themselves as nighttime destinations.

"By establishing quality dining precincts and introducing entertainment options, shopping centres are able to activate the huge untapped potential of nighttime patronage, as well as the day to day custom which they’re used to.”
Westfield Carousel, Perth’s largest current retail centre, is set to be overshadowed by a proposed 106,050 square metre proposed expansion of Morley Galleria, which will see the complex boosted to a total GLA of 179,415 square metres.

The expansion plans include a six storey hotel, apartments and office tower, a medical centre, tavern, theatre, cinema and recreational facilities.

Westfield Carousel will also undergo an expansion, adding 47,108 square metres to become a 130,230 square metre complex, while Garden City will become the state’s third largest centre with 120,000 square metres GLA after a 55,000 square metre extension.

A proposed 49,393 square metre extension to the current 64,000 square metre Karrinyup Shopping Centre will have a strong focus on lifestyle and entertainment elements, with it set to include a commercial centre, medical and consulting rooms, community spaces and extensive town square.

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