A Sydney shopping centre opened by Queen Elizabeth II for Australia’s Bicentennial in 1988 will close for good on Friday.
Darling Harbour’s Harbourside shopping centre opened in 1988, but the food and shopping destination will be demolished, as part of a $2 billion redevelopment which will be carried out by Mirvac
This comes as growing vacancy rates have plagued the centre, with many of the shop holdings currently vacant.
Set to begin in January 2023, the redevelopment will include a world-class retail precinct, commercial workplace, outdoor spaces and entertainment hubs. A 42-story residential tower is also in the words, which will add around 300 luxury homes.
Another nearby icon is also slated to close, with the last day of operation for the Darling Harbour Ferris Wheel expected to be on January 2, 2023.
Despite the promised facelift to the area, retailers who have been forced to shut up shop said they were “upset” over the forced closure.
Some of the retailers and food outlets which occupied the centre included the Hard Rock Cafe, Typo, McDonald’s, Ally Fashion and Pancakes on the Rocks.
Speaking to 7News, Lilly Makhoul from Marco Gianni Shoes said: “All the businesses are very upset about having to close down, but what do we do, it’s beyond us”.
On Instagram, bar and club The Watershed Hotel confirmed that “the rumours are true,” and it would be their “final week of trade”.
In a statement released by the NSW government, Investment Minister Alister Henskens hoped the project would boost Sydney’s tourism and increase jobs. He expects the entire development to create more than 2000 construction jobs and another 4500 roles once completed.
Cities Minister Rob Stokes says the Harbourside redevelopment is part of the state government’s plan to revamp Sydney’s waterfront.
“From Bays West to Circular Quay, we’re breathing new life into Sydney’s harbour foreshore to make it greener, more accessible and more beautiful,” he said.
“The project will deliver a hectare of precious public open space, include a 3500 sqm park and a widening of the waterfront promenade.”
Story Credit: news.com.au