Growing up: investment signals confidence in south

An application to build a Foodland supermarket in Williamstown has been welcomed by the southern Barossa town.

Earlier this year, rumours circulated that the town’s old fish and chip shop was to become a supermarket.

But last Thursday, the Barossa Herald exclusively confirmed that an application had been lodged by Saltyjams Pty Ltd with The Barossa Council on August 18.

The proposed supermarket on Queen Street would span 1100 square metres and include 50 on-site car parks, while the total cost of the project, including all fitout works by the lessor and lessee, would amount to some $3.5 million.

Total jobs during construction was estimated at about 50 people and, once trading, the supermarket business was expected to employ between 20 to 25 full-time staff.

“The building has been designed to fit with the heritage (requirements) of Williamstown,” a director for the applicants said.

“The operation of the supermarket will enhance the town centre of Williamstown by ensuring local shoppers remain in the town for their essential grocery shopping and will attract trade from the surrounding catchment, therefore enhancing Williamstown as a destination.

“This will in turn support local business houses by bringing more people to the town centre.”

The proposal was met with strong support from Williamstown residents and business owners, including Southern Barossa Alliance chair Simon Taylor and Barossa councillor Marg Harris.

They both agreed a supermarket would add value to the community, particularly after the Southern Barossa recreation hub was complete.

Williamstown has been growing strongly and this is a logical step forward - Schubert MP Stephan Knoll

“Williamstown will become the Southern Barossa’s recreation hub, with the Barossa’s only maritime facility (at Warren Reservoir),” Mr Taylor said.

“A supermarket makes sense for those travelling to stay and use our facilities.”

Cr Harris said she believed a new business would have “so many benefits” for the area.

“The benefits to community through ongoing employment for youth, but also during the construction phase, can only be seen as a plus for the community,” she said.

“With the development for recreational activities at Warren Reservoir the benefits to locals and tourists alike will be widely appreciated.”

With a growing business community in the Southern Barossa, Cr Harris said the addition of a supermarket would only serve to strengthen that.

“I know the local community will support it,” she said.

“We all love to support local business, and I think they can all work in harmony together.”

Schubert MP Stephan Knoll said the concept was a “great idea”.

“It means locals within Williamstown can do their shopping without heading out of the area,” he said.

“It’s also a positive move to provide employment for the local area, especially for the kids.

“It’s a sign of confidence in the region – Williamstown has been growing strongly and this is a logical step forward.”

Once the application satisfied council and Develpment Assessment Panel requirements, construction was anticipated to begin with six months of approval.

The Barossa Council was approached for comment and responded with a screenshot of the application receipt, publicly available on council’s website.

A spokesperson said this was the only information council could publicly release at this time.

An agenda for the September 5 meeting of the DAP was not yet available on council’s website, and council was unable to provide any further information about prospective dates when questioned on Monday.

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