Kwinana growth provides business, job opportunities

Rodney Andrews (Kwinana Store Manager). Picture: Jon Hewson. d443188
Rodney Andrews (Kwinana Store Manager). Picture: Jon Hewson. d443188

THE City of Kwinana welcomes a new family every 12 hours and is one of the fastest growing communities in the nation.

This changing face of Kwinana has put pressure on the council to deliver infrastructure and services and has provided opportunities for business investment and local jobs.

Major retailers to advance into Kwinana include Kambo’s, which formally opens tomorrow and Woolworths Wellard, which opened in November last year.

Aldi is lined up to bring in supermarket competition in the second half of 2016.

As a WA company, Kambo’s has six stores from Midland to Harvey. Managing director Peter Kambouris said the 2000sq m Kwinana store would initially employ 20 staff.

“The amazing growth of Kwinana has been the most impressive aspect towards our consideration,” Mr Kambouris said.

“Moving among the people there is a good ‘old fashioned’ sense of community, whilst progressing their infrastructure in a modern organised way.”

He believed there was a desperate need for an appliance retailer in the area, with people previously forced to go to Cockburn or Rockingham.

Kwinana Marketplace has been criticised in the past over its vacancy rates, but new businesses continue to open at the site, including Bendigo Community Bank.

Development on the Meare Avenue side of the shopping centre is making way for a raft of other businesses to move in.

Aldi will open on the corner of Chisham and Meares avenues, creating up to 20 permanent positions and providing increased opportunities for local suppliers.

Last year, Woolworths opened its Wellard store 3km from its store in the Kwinana Marketplace, but the Courier was assured it was going from “strength to strength” despite the close proximity.

“We are particularly delighted with the positive feedback we have received around the easily accessible entrance and increased parking,” a Woolworths spokesman said about the Wellard store.

Rockingham Kwinana Chamber of Commerce chief executive Tony Solin said the local business landscape was constantly changing as the population continued to grow at record pace.

“The growth has opened up opportunities for all levels of business in the Kwinana, Wellard and Baldivis areas in particular. Kambos and other larger business such as Aldi are good for the local economy, and help accommodate the need for more goods and services as the growth continues,” Mr Solin said.

Kwinana Mayor Carol Adams said the City worked hard to strike the right balance.

“Since 2007, when we launched the ‘Looking Forward’ investment program, Kwinana has undergone an incredible transformation,” Cr Adams said.

“The $340 million city centre revitalisation saw the opening of a range of state-of the-art facilities, including the Darius Wells, Zone Youth Space and Kwinana Marketplace Shopping Centre.

“There can be no doubt that over the past decade the opportunities available to Kwinana residents, from employment to retail, to recreation and study, have never been so great.”