For me, whether Council should allow a larger supermarket to be constructed along Numurkah Road comes down to two parts – would an objection stymie development in an area that is expecting high growth over the next 20 years, or is it too early? Would a larger, multi-national supermarket spell the demise of Fairley’s IGA and have a detrimental impact on our CBD?
I firmly believe competition is a healthy thing, but IGA are the only remaining, independently owned, Australian supermarket chain and give a lot back to the community. I’m also mindful an objection could be challenged and overturned by VCAT based on planning grounds, which would ultimately cost rate-payers a pretty penny.
I shop at IGA. It’s convenient and each time there are familiar, friendly faces. Arguably, shoppers value local content over automated checkouts. No doubt, many of us will continue to support the supermarket that supports locals – ultimately it’s our own purse-strings that will determine whether IGA continues to thrive.
Whatever the outcome, I wish IGA all the best and look forward to them submitting a Planning Application to upgrade their facilities to the high standard pictured on their billboard.