Owner Troy Bottegal said he and his partner Samantha had ‘wiped Subiaco off the drawing board’ for their third franchise before hearing Councillor Mark Burns on the radio talking about reduced rents and positive main street changes last month.
‘The socio-economic and cultural environment of Subiaco suits our business down to the ground, but in the past it has been impossible for us to get anywhere near the high road,’ he said.
Jones Lang LaSalle retail leasing executive Adam Stanford said local landlords were willing to work with good operators by offering longer-terms, softer rents and assistance with entry into the market.
‘We’re seeing a real evolution of Subiaco,’ Mr Stanford said. ‘It’s now up to the developers, leasing agents and operators to work together to find that equilibrium.’
Japanese franchise restaurant Wagamama closed last month after more than eight years in Subiaco Centro, while Han’s Caf� owner Ian Han recently put his 360sq m restaurant up for sale.
‘The place is too big for us, so we want to move to a smaller venue but stay in Subiaco,’ Mr Han said.
Cr Burns said upcoming developments including the 16-storey Pavilion Market development, cinema and hotel at the Ace cinemas site, Subi Strand apartments and an office building on Seddon Street would further encourage economic optimism in Subiaco.
‘The City is also about to spend just under $4 million on Rokeby Road between the top of the street and Roberts Road,’ he said.
Mr Stanford said he was expecting a boost in leasing enquiries once people saw the cranes go up for the new developments.
‘In five years time we will see a different Rokeby Road with the high density residential creating a hub where people live, shop and eat,’ he said.
Mrs Bottegal said she was reassured by the fact that owners and agents were now willing to work together and compromise.
‘We’ve been around for a long time, we know our product works and we know we’ll be great tenants but we just need to know if the place will work for us,’ she said.