The humble suburban shop was once the destination for early morning milk runs, newspaper pick-ups and ice creams after school. But with the rise of large shopping centres boasting huge supermarkets and retailers, the little corner store seemed certain to disappear.
Headlines welcomed the ‘death of Canberra’s suburbs’ and speedy growth in housing around the inner north and south painted a foregone conclusion, but Canberra isn’t ready to let go of their local suburban shops just yet.
Revitalisation efforts, which typically see small businesses move into government-owned shops, has taken on many shapes in Canberra. Cafes and small restaurants remain a favourite, but community spaces and galleries are also on the rise across the city.
The ACT Government appears to understand the importance of revitalising our suburban shops, working to upgrade 20 of the 66 shops across the city in the last decade, according to government data provided to the Canberra Times.
According to Mark Larmer of Independent Property Group, growth and renewal of a suburb has plenty of benefits for buyers and homeowners.
“For many buyers, lifestyle is just as important as the property itself. People want the benefit of living in an established suburb – the large backyard, access to public transport, good schools. But they also want the convenience of being close to cafes and shops.
The more a suburb has to offer the more attractive it is to buyers. Properties become more valuable and homeowners benefit from an increase in demand. All residents get to enjoy the perks of revitalisation, it’s a win for everyone”.
Having limited ourselves to sipping long blacks on Lonsdale Street for too long, we set out to venture across Canberra and discover more about the suburbs leading the way in revitalisation. Continue reading