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Big Apple in Docklands?

04 Oct 2018

Big Apple in Docklands? Image

By Niccola Anthony

Protests against the new Apple flagship store at Fed Square have unearthed an unlikely alternative candidate for the store – Docklands.

Colleen Peterson, town planner and CEO of Ratio Consulting, spoke at the September 19 rally protesting the state government’s plans to build the Apple flagship store.

Ms Peterson raised the idea of Docklands as an alternative location for the store, saying that Apple should look into going to Docklands instead.

“Having the Apple Store in Fed Square does nothing to complement the civic and public function of the space. The location of Apple has the potential to change the nature of the square with people coming to shop rather than enjoy the public space,” Ms Peterson said.

“However, Docklands would benefit from a strong retail tenant. It would bring additional foot traffic into the area and help support existing retail and other land uses in the precinct.”

The Docklands Apple store proposal has support from Greens Melbourne councillor Rohan Leppert, a co-guest-speaker to Ms Peterson at the rally.

“It would be wonderful if a new Apple Flagship store found its way to somewhere like Docklands. Federation Square is the wrong place and Docklands would be a much better fit,” Cr Leppert said.

“There are certain parts of Docklands where it would obviously be inappropriate. Existing public open space needs to be respected and celebrated, not completely dominated by new commercial interests.”

“But there are shopping destinations in Docklands already that would get a massive boost from having an Apple store located nearby. Government is always thinking about what new destination drivers could be placed in Docklands.”

“We are frequently contacted by restaurants, cafes and other businesses around Victoria Harbour about winter visitation, through-traffic and how to get more attractors into the area to drive-up numbers and, maybe, an Apple store would contribute to that greatly.”

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