Will we see much change at centres such as as restrictions ease on May 15? Operators are sceptical about the financial viability.
Will we see much change at centres such as as restrictions ease on May 15? Operators are sceptical about the financial viability.

Traders not convinced on benefits of Stage 1 reopening

AN EASING of restrictions on restaurants, cafes and bars on May 15 was not likely to see much change at shopping centres dominated by dining outlets such as Coorparoo Square.

Under Stage 1 of the State Government's step-down approach to COVID-19, dining in will be allowed at restaurants, pubs, clubs, RSLs and cafes for a maximum of 10 patrons at one time as part of a gradual reopening.

Coorparoo Square retail, which is mainly made up of restaurants and cafes centred around anchor tenants Aldi, Dendy Cinema and Beyond the Pale Bar has been trading through the restrictions at half strength offering takeaway.

The restirctions announced late in March were devastating for the centre, which opened in November 2017.

Many said restricting customers to 10 would not cover the costs of full staffing and overheads required for a full reopening.

The view echoed that of leading Queensland restaurateurs frustrated by coronavirus rollback plans.

By Stage 2 of the easing of restrictions on June 12, 20 people will be permitted for dining in, but bars will remain shut. However indoor cinemas will be allowed to reopen which should see a bigger change in operations at Coorparoo Sqaure.

Of the nine food and beverage retailers in the centre, eight are trading in a takeaway capacity.

La Macelleria gelato shop temporarily closed soon after Dendy Cinema closed its doors during the COVID-19 shutdown, directing customers to its Teneriffe and West End stores for takeaway.

The heartbreaking news when restrictions were announced in late March was for the centre's new store Kubo's Bar and Grill, which planned to open in the store vacated by Special Rub Smoked Bar-B-Q. It has remained closed since.

 

Restrictions in March stopped new Coorparoo Square retailer Kubo's plans to open. Picture: Brian Bennion
Restrictions in March stopped new Coorparoo Square retailer Kubo's plans to open. Picture: Brian Bennion

Coorparoo Square centre management said they would continue to work one-on-one with its retailers to understand their individual needs, to ensure they offered the best possible support now and when they are able to re-open.

"A complete marketing strategy is being developed to be implemented as soon as reopening dates can be confirmed," the centre management said.

"We are developing a central retailer intraportal to ensure all tenants and their staff are updated on the latest news and advice from Government, the different assistance and support packages available to retailers, the centre's marketing plans and more.

"Like everyone, we can't wait until it's safe to return to business as usual and to support all our tenants, including our food and beverage retailers, as they re-open to the community. In the meantime, we will work individually with tenants, engage with the local community and ensure all necessary guidelines, including social distancing, are promoted."

 

 

Mission Vietnamese waiter Lincoln Dang says customers have helped the store keep afloat with takeaways. Picture: Brian Bennion
Mission Vietnamese waiter Lincoln Dang says customers have helped the store keep afloat with takeaways. Picture: Brian Bennion

 

Coorparoo Square retailers look forward to further lifting of restrictions. Picture: Brian Bennion
Coorparoo Square retailers look forward to further lifting of restrictions. Picture: Brian Bennion

 

Originally published as Who will open with Stage 1 easing of restrictions?


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