Suburban shopping malls aren’t dead but it’s not hard to kill them off, retail experts say.
Fears of ghost malls has been raised again with news that two more tenants, McDonald’s and OPSM, are joining the string of tenants to leave Wellington’s Johnsonville Mall.
Other malls around the Wellington region are also experiencing fluctuating fortunes, ranging from being a little tired to severe decline, in the case of Wainuiomata mall.
But Kapiti’s Coastlands is booming, thanks to a rising population and motorway changes, while Wellington CBD itself is getting a new lease of life from overseas names.
Elsewhere, Wellington’s biggest mall, Queensgate in Lower Hutt, has been going through substantial refurbishment as it recovers from last November’s quake, sending some shoppers to Porirua’s North City.
Paul Keane, a former chairman of property and retail consultancy RCG, said population changes and ease of transportation changed suburbs, but essentially it was up to mall owners to keep their centres vibrant…