Wed, 24 April

Plaza a town killer?

Has the Renmark Plaza ‘killed’ Renmark?

No, it hasn’t.

Has it permanently changed the town’s traditional shopping centre? Of course it has. The area is no longer the constant hive of activity it once was, thanks largely to the downturn in foot traffic.

However, it’s worth noting that the region’s economic downturn has no doubt played some part in this trend.

A ‘dossier’ was recently passed on to The Pioneer highlighting all the shops that have closed in Renmark since the plaza opened back in 2007. It indeed made for sobering reading.

However, it didn’t include details of how the area between Nineteenth Street and Twentieth Street has changed since the advent of the plaza.

Another Pioneer reader this week estimated that particular area once had only four retail outlets, but now has approximately 30 – including the shops in the plaza.

So, by their calculations, Renmark actually has around 10 more retail outlets than it had seven years ago.

The health and sustainability of some of those stores may be in question, but the view adds an extra dimension to the debate, which is destined to continue for many years to come (just ask the people in Berri).