THE next chapter of a drawn-out saga in expansion plans for Warrnambool’s Gateway Plaza shopping centre will be revealed next month with the release of recommendations from a special appeals panel.
Panel members sat in Warrnambool last week to hear submissions from the city council and AMP Capital. AMP owns the plaza.
A proposed planning amendment and development permit encompasses the rezoning of vacant land to the east of the plaza and allowing shopping floorspace to be increased.
However, AMP is opposing stipulations on extensions of an access road to the north, building design and landscaping.
If approved, the permits would allow retail space to be almost doubled to 33,374 square metres including a second discount department store (DDS) and more speciality shops.
AMP successfully opposed a previous floorspace limitation which prevented a second DDS and thwarted its aim to attract a major retailer like Big W.
An appeals panel also heard AMP opposition to a city council decision changing floorspace limit at the nearby Homemaker Centre which would allow a supermarket like Aldi to set up.
The council’s proposed planning amendment raises the maximum leasable floor area from 6000 square metres to 7600 square metres.