Warrawong Plaza

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Warrawong Plaza
Location Warrawong, New South Wales, Australia
Coordinates 34°29′10″S 150°53′20″E / 34.4861°S 150.889°E / -34.4861; 150.889Coordinates: 34°29′10″S 150°53′20″E / 34.4861°S 150.889°E / -34.4861; 150.889
Opening date 1960
Management JLL
Owner Hong-Kong subsidiary of The Blackstone Group
No. of stores and services 140[1]
No. of anchor tenants 3[1]
Total retail floor area 57,582 m2 (619,807 sq ft)[1]
No. of floors 2
Parking 2,167 spaces[1]
Website www.warrawongplaza.com.au

Warrawong Plaza (formerly Westfield Warrawong) is a major shopping centre located in Warrawong, a suburb of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia. With a retail floor area of 57,582 m2 (619,807 sq ft), it is currently the third largest shopping centre in the Illawarra region.

History and development[edit]

Warrawong Plaza originally opened in 1960 as Lake Market Shopping Centre.[citation needed]

The centre has a current catchment area of 246,680 persons, and retail spending in the catchment area estimated at A$2.3 billion (2005).[1][2]

Redevelopments[edit]

Upon acquisition by The Westfield Group in 1985, the centre was extensively redeveloped and relaunched as Westfield Warrawong in 1988.[1] Further extensions were conducted in 1996, adding a 6,000 m2 (64,583 sq ft) Big W to the centre.[1][3]

Previously, a Big W department store had been an occupant of the centre from 1965, however due to a change in retailling strategy by parent company Woolworths Limited, the then-two-level store was sold to David Jones Limited on April 19, 1971 and converted to a David Jones store which in turn was closed in January 1986. By 2011, the centre had grown to 57,582 m2 (619,807 sq ft) with 140 retailers.[4]

Acquisition by The Blackstone Group[edit]

In August 2015, Scentre Group announced it had sold Westfield Warrawong to a subsidiary of The Blackstone Group along with three other centres as part of sell-off of "non-strategic" assets for a total of $783 Million. At the same time it was announced that Jones Lang LaSalle would be responsible for the management of the centre.[5]

On 11 September 2015, the new management unveiled the new name, Warrawong Plaza, and branding going forward.

Events[edit]

In 1999, the centre received significant global coverage of its efforts to deal with shoplifting and anti-social behaivour.[6][7] In an effort to discourage local youth using the centre as a gathering place, the management used the centre's public address system to play older style music, including Bing Crosby's 1938 song "My Heart Is Taking Lessons".[6][7]

On 21 September 2004, a man sitting beside a tree outside the centre was the victim of a vehicle accident.[8] The man died after being hit by an out of control sedan as he sat next to a tree outside the centre.[8]

In March 2005, local bus company Premier Illawarra gave serious consideration to suspending one of its Thursday evening services from the centre due to months of increased vandalism and anti-social behaivour in surrounding streets around the centre.[9] Despite the efforts of bus inspectors and transit police, very little had been achieved to curb the problems.[9]

Transport[edit]

The centre is serviced by a public bus service operated by Premier Illawarra.

References[edit]

External links[edit]