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News Release

Wellington

The rise of retail convenience in the capital

Wellington’s growing population of inner city residents and professionals has made it the perfect metropolis for the rise of convenience retail.


 

 

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​​​Wellington’s increasing population is a driving force behind demand for convenience retail. JLL predicts that by 2025 Wellington’s CBD population will increase by 20.6%, with population density increasing to nearly 7,000 people per square kilometre. 

Senior Consultant at JLL, Chris McCashin says, “This growth in the office worker and city dweller population is shaping the future of Wellington’s CBD retail environment and is likely to add up to $10m of food and beverage retailing and $45m of other general retailing to the CBD economy over the next 10 years. Those retail operators who are focused on convenience and rely on experience are expected to thrive.”

McCashin notes that there is a growing number of retail stores entering high density areas in order to service the growing population of city dwellers and professionals.

“Wellington city is seeing an increase in students and apartment dwellers who are forgoing the use of cars and therefore have limited access to larger city fringe supermarkets. The compact nature of Wellington, with the CBD spanning a mere 3.5 square kilometres creates a prime market for convenience retail due to the ease of public transport or walking whilst carrying bags.”

“Key public transport hub, New World Railway Metro, captures the heavy foot traffic from the professional population arriving and departing Wellington and provides these busy individuals with a convenient ‘top up’ solution to their regular grocery shop. Although there has also been a shift in consumer trends toward online shopping, these metro style stores continue to grow in popularity and JLL expect to see more of these pop up in the future,” he adds. 

This is evident through the introduction of a new Countdown Metro which is set to open in Cable Car Lane in late 2015. 

“This is an increasingly competitive market and supermarket enterprises such as Foodstuffs and Progressive Enterprises are capitalising on the high pedestrian count areas such as Willis Street and Lambton Quay. The addition of a new Countdown metro will be excellent for central city residents, local workers, and cable car users such as tourists and Kelburn residents” says McCashin.

While these metro stores stock a smaller range of goods compared to larger supermarkets they are proving popular for both students and professionals as this segment tend to do smaller shops daily as opposed to the traditional once weekly shop.

JLL’s latest research regarding retail space shows that Lambton Quay continues to be well supported by retailers and consumers alike. Given the preference for space along Lambton Quay and surrounding areas the CBD market is likely to experience the fastest decline in vacancy rates.