Chadstone Shopping Centre
|Location||Malvern East, Victoria, Australia|
|Opening date||3 October 1960|
|Developer||Colonial First State Property Management|
|Management||Colonial First State Property Management|
|Owner||Gandel Group (50%)
CFS Retail Property Trust  (50%)
|No. of stores and services||530|
|No. of anchor tenants||14|
|Total retail floor area||171,217 m2 (1,842,960 sq ft)|
|No. of floors||3|
Chadstone Shopping Centre is a super regional shopping centre located in the inner south-eastern suburb of Malvern East in the city of Melbourne, Australia and is the biggest Shopping Centre in Australia. The centre opened on 3 October 1960 and was the first self‐contained regional shopping centre in Melbourne. It contains 129,924m2 of shop floor space, about 530 stores and more than 9300 free car parking spaces. Chadstone Shopping Centre is claimed to be the biggest shopping centre in the Southern Hemisphere.
The centre, also known colloquially as "Chaddy", boasts major anchor stores such as the Myer and David Jones department stores, Coles, Woolworths and Aldi supermarkets, and Kmart and Target discount department stores as well as a Hoyts cinema multiplex, an AMF bowling alley, an Apple Store, Dick Smith and JB Hi-Fi electronics stores and more than 500 specialty stores, of which the majority are fashion-related, including numerous high-end labels. There are two food courts and also two office towers located at the southern side of the centre. It has as many as 68,000 visitors on its busiest trading days and attracts about 400,000 tourists a year from interstate and 200,000 from overseas.
The centre's owners have sought a further expansion to include a 180-room hotel and 15,000m2 of offices, to take total floor space to 221,217m2, including 156,924m2 of shop floor space.
Opened in October 1960 at a cost of £6 million, Chadstone Shopping Centre was the first self-contained regional shopping centre in Melbourne, and the largest built in Australia to that time. The centre was built and owned by the Myer Emporium, and marked the transformation of shopping in Australia from the traditional central city and strip-shopping precincts to the now familiar mall-type shopping centre.
The site of the current shopping centre was once extensive paddocks of the Convent of the Good Shepherd on which cattle grazed until the mid-1950s. The initial 30 acres (12 ha) of land was sold to Myer in March 1958.
The development of Chadstone was driven by Ken Myer, who in 1949 looked to the USA for the lead in retail developments, with decentralised centres fuelled by expanding suburban growth and car reliance. Further development of the concept occurred after Myer's 1953 visit to the USA, where he met with a number of architects involved with the design of shopping malls, and in 1954 Myer secured 86 acres (35 ha) of land in Burwood for a shopping centre, but was ultimately not used for the project.
In 1958 the American firm of Welton Becket and Associates was appointed as the design architect, with Tompkins and Shaw Architects as the production architect. During the project the senior board of Myer was unhappy with the process, concerned that the architects did not understand the "Australian Concept", and were blindly adopting the American shopping mall model.
In 1960 the Myer board wrote:
- "Although based in a broad way on the pattern of shopping centres in the United States, Chadstone has been individually designed to suit local needs and its own location."
The original shopping centre consisted of a single open-air mall with Myer at the southern end and a Dickins supermarket at the northern end; following the US pattern of shopping malls.
The first major change was made to the centre in 1967: the mall was roofed over with translucent fibreglass, an acknowledgement that the open mall did not suit the Melbourne climate. During the same period a bowling alley and auditorium were opened, and the Dickens store was altered to be more easily accessed from the mall.
In 1984 the centre had its first expansion: in 1985 Coles New World was relocated and a Target Discount Department Store was opened, and in 1986 a Hoyts 8 Cinema Complex was opened. A major extension doubled the lettable area in the late 1980s, and during the same era the Convent of the Good Shepherd was demolished to extend the carpark of the complex.
Chadstone has claimed the title, "Southern hemisphere's largest shopping centre" since 2009, and also "Australia's largest shopping centre" since 2007, thanks to regular development, Westfield Knox having held the latter title from November 2002 until 2007 after the completion of their own expansion works. Chadstone's main local rivals are Westfield Doncaster to the north, Westfield Knox to the east and Westfield Southland to the south.
Throughout the 1990s, Chadstone has undergone numerous developments. These include the development of multi-storey carparks due to the boundaries of the centre being built-up with no further room to expand. Approximately 20% of the original mall structure is left intact with this number to be reduced due to the construction of the West Mall.
By 1999 Chadstone's lettable area covered 126,000m2, after the extension of the Myer and David Jones stores. Part of stages 20 and 21, this expansion cost $150 million and took two and a half years to complete. Local construction company Probuild has been responsible for every major stage of expansion and redevelopment at Chadstone Shopping Centre, commencing at stage 5 in 1989, with stage 33 (West Mall) having been completed in 2009.
The new extension, dubbed "Chadstone Place", featured a Woolworths Supermarket (rebranded and relocated from the previous "Safeway" supermarket), First Choice Liquor, Aldi and a Dick Smith Electronics Concept Store along with an airport-style waiting area bus interchange, two new health clubs (Contours and Fitness First Platinum) and a crèche. On 29 October 2007 the first section of the redevelopment was open. Named "The Loop Mall", it featured 44 new stores including a redesigned Jetty Surf and new entrances opposite Kmart and Toys 'R' Us.
The last major redevelopment, commencing in early 2007, impacted on almost a quarter of the centre, (the oldest section of the centre, from Sportsgirl to Mrs. Field's/Borders, being closed), from 31 May 2008, until November 2009.
The development also included redesigning the roads leading into Chadstone to allow for better traffic flow into the centre. As part of the development an independent community group launched and maintained a website to keep track of construction developments. The State Government refused to impose a condition sought by the Stonnington Council calling for a transport study by the Government and Gandel, including the possible construction of a rail link.
On 22 August 2009, 50 new stores, including Sportsgirl, Portmans, Esprit, Witchery, were opened. In November, a golden strip of luxury retailers were officially opened. Twelve international fashion houses now have stores at Chadstone including Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada, Chanel, Miu Miu, Tiffany & Co., Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, Omega, Burberry, Coach and Jimmy Choo. The expansion provided a total of 530 stores.
On 20 August 2011, managing director of Colonial First State Global Asset Management, Darren Steinberg, announced a proposal to expand Chadstone's floor area to 221,217m², to enable a redevelopment of the oldest part of the property to the north and construct two buildings of up to 14 storeys on its southern boundary facing Princes Highway. Up to 60,000 m² of floor area would be revamped and an extra 27,000 m² added to the centre. The proposal includes refurbishments of the cinemas and food precincts. An extra 1400 car-parking spaces are proposed for the centre, taking total car spaces to 10,708. The project, scheduled to be completed in late 2015 at a cost of A$520 million, will be the biggest non-retail extension in the centre's history.
The redevelopment plans were supported by an independent planning panel in July 2012 and approved by the City of Stonnington on 14 August 2012. On 10 November 2012, the centre's redevelopment plans were given the final approval from the State Government.
Revenue and profit
Chadstone Shopping Centre was the first shopping centre in Australia to have its total worth valued at more than A$1 billion. Chadstone Shopping Centre's net income was $970 million in 2004. Its annual profit in (2004) was A$79.03 million, with its entirety of stores gaining an income of A$119.23 million. In 2004, Chadstone Shopping Centre had an Annual Traffic Movement of 16.7 million moving through the centre.
In 2007, the annual turnover was A$1 billion, making it the shopping centre in Australia with the highest annual turnover and the first to have an annual turnover of A$1 billion.
Transport and road congestion
Chadstone Shopping Centre was designed as a car-based centre when this was the norm and it remains highly dependent on cars for customer access. The centre has more than 9300 car parking spaces and the proportion of staff and customers arriving by car continues to grow: between 2002 and 2011 the share of customers arriving by bus fell sharply from 17% to 12%, while the proportion of those walking or cycling fell from 5% to 3%. Planners now acknowledge it would be a major challenge to reverse the trend.
The independent planning panel that in 2012 reviewed Stonnington Council's proposed C154 planning scheme amendment relating to Chadstone's expansion plans said the centre contributed to "significant traffic issues" in the area, with traffic on nearby major arterial networks heavily congested and intersections "close to saturated at peak times". The panel's report said problems also arose from overflow parking in nearby streets at peak times such as Christmas and major sales, and that the local community had expressed concerns that future growth at Chadstone would worsen the problem. The panel concluded that the ability to further expand floor space would be limited unless road capacity was enhanced through major arterial roadworks and a substantial shift in the mode of transport for visitors and staff.
Traffic congestion also impacts on the 14 bus routes that service the shopping centre, including two higher frequency Smart Bus routes. Buses often take 15 minutes to travel to or from Holmesglen, 1.8km away. The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA), which is campaigning for improved public transport in and around the centre, says buses are slow, often travelling less than 10 km/h (6 mph) in the area and are often overcrowded. Services for many bus routes are infrequent after hours and on weekends.
The nearest railway stations are at Hughesdale and Oakleigh on the Cranbourne/Pakenham lines and Holmesglen on the Glen Waverley line. Hughesdale station is about 10 minutes' walk from the shopping centre; Holmesglen is about 30 minutes. Submissions to the 2012 planning panel by the PTUA and Town and Country Planning Authority (TCPA) supported an extension of the Alamein railway line to Oakleigh railway station via Chadstone for either light or heavy rail services and the RACV has also asked the state government to consider providing an underground rail link. Stonnington Council has proposed a Municipal Strategic Statement and Local Planning Policy in which it would seek a fixed rail link to Chadstone Shopping Centre. State government transport authority Public Transport Victoria also views a rail link to Chadstone as desirable, but says the cost of building one would be "prohibitive".
There are 530 stores & luxury boutiques, including two luxury department stores Myer and David Jones along with major tenants Kmart, Target, Coles, Best & Less an AMF Bowling Centre, and a Hoyts Cinema Complex featuring 16 theatres (of which 7 are Cinemaxx with stadium seating and 5 include the higher-priced La Premiere seating). The many clothing and luxury stores range from global & well renowned names including Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Tiffany & Co, Ralph Lauren, ck Calvin Klein, Pandora, Guess, Levi's, Nike, Country Road, Emporio Armani, Calvin Klein Jeans and Speedo, right down to other labels such as SABA.
Major stores include:
- Myer 1960 - relocated in November 1998 to make way for centre expansion (22,500 m2) (renovated in 2011) - 3 floors
- David Jones November 1999 - (15,150 m2) (renovated in 2011) - 3 floors
- Kmart Early 1995 - (7,200 m2)
- Target 1985 - (9,000 m2)
- Coles Opened 4 October 1985
- Woolworths 29 October 2008. However this supermarket was previously opened in 1960 under the older "Safeway" branding, before being rebranded and relocated.
- Aldi 29 October 2008
- JB Hi-Fi
- Dick Smith Electronics
- Toys R Us toy store.
- The Reject Shop discount variety store.
- Apple Store 13 September 2008
- Best & Less 29 October 2008
- Witchery 2009 - 'flagship'
- Sportsgirl 2009 - 'super flagship' (750 m2)
- Gap August 2010 - 2-storey flagship (740 m2)
- Zara August 2012
Fitness & Leisure:
- Fitness First Platinum - 2008
- Chanel Beauty
- ck Calvin Klein
- Louis Vuitton
- Tiffany & Co
- Georg Jensen
- Jimmy Choo
- Ralph Lauren
- Hugo Boss
- Miu Miu
- Salvatore Ferragamo
- Emporio Armani
Designer Boutique stores:
- 50 Australian and International designer boutique stores. including Arthur Galan AG, Armani Junior, Bettina Liano, Carla Zampatti, Karen Millen, Sass & bide, Ted Baker, Stuart Weitzman and more. 
Past Major stores:
- Buckley & Nunn Department Store 1960, later closed.
- Dickins Supermarket 1960 - 1982
- McEwan's Hardware Store 1985 - September 1997
- BI-LO (renamed to Coles in December 2006) May 1990 - November 2007
- Borders three-storey flagship. Closed in mid-2011 and was replaced, on two floors, by Rivers Australia - Clothing & Footwear Merchants which has now been relocated to the old Dick Smith Powerhouse store, and a sports store has taken over the top floor of the old Borders with All Books 4 Less taking the bottom floor.
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- Chadstone Shopping Centre official website
- Chadstone Development Discussions - Middle Road Redevelopment: Unofficial News & Photos
- Official Facebook page