We might need lights on Thomas Street

If your family ever watched Sale of the Century, as mine did, no doubt you can still visualise those overly elaborate doors sliding open and hear Glenn Ridge's voice: "let's go shopping!"

Murray Bridge residents would never have imagined, in the 80s or 90s, they'd someday have seven supermarkets to choose from.

That said, it's surprising Aldi has taken this long to enter a market that has always looked kindly on discount retailers.

It has been three years since the company began its expansion into South Australia, and two years ago - when it put out a statement listing all the locations it was interested in - Murray Bridge was not on it.

Yet "up to 50 stores" would be built in the coming years, they enthused.

Aldi's South Australian success has since fallen somewhere close to the midpoint on a scale of success which has Krispy Kreme and its rabid fans at one end and Starbucks and its venti-sized failures at the other.

There is potential for the whole thing to go pear-shaped in Murray Bridge.

Some commenters on The Standard's Facebook page have pledged never to shop at Aldi because it is foreign-owned.

But a short while ago it was the duopoly of Coles and Woolies incurring shoppers' wrath for their milk price feud and the devastating effect it had on Australia's dairy industry.

Many of us cannot afford the luxury of shopping at some of the smaller, independent stores either, for a lack of time or money or transport.

Anyway, it is not the place of this column to tell you where to buy your groceries.

There is one argument to be put forward about the location of Aldi's proposed store, though.

For years it has been hard enough to turn from Thomas Street onto Adelaide Road.

It will get harder still if a supermarket is built on the corner.

Please, DPTI, could you think about some traffic lights, or a roundabout at least?

And while you're at it, if you could extend that turning lane in the middle of Adelaide Road down past Maurice Road and into the western end of town, that would be great.

PS: Should the new store wish to promote itself, or any of the existing stores wish to shore up their public profiles, I know some advertising representatives who would be happy to help.

Peri Strathearn


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