UPDATE 1PM: GERMAN supermarket giant ALDI is set to deliver 40 jobs for the Rockhampton region.
This morning, Rockhampton Region Mayor Margaret Strelow joined an ALDI representative to announce that ALDI was looking to build two supermarkets in the Rockhampton area.
Cr Strelow said the stores were set to create both temporary and permanent jobs for the region throughout the construction and operation phase of the new retailer.
"It'll be 15 to 20 jobs in every store and of course there is the construction element as well," Cr Strelow said.
"Probably what's most exciting is that something that our community have been pressuring us for, have been lobbying us for, since 2012 - 2013 is now going to be delivered."
Shortly after the announcement, ALDI Australia released a statement outlining why they chose Rockhampton.
"ALDI Australia is eager to bring our unique shopping experience to more Australians, offering high-quality products at permanently low prices," an ALDI spokesperson said.
"As we expand, we continue to look for new opportunities to meet resident demands for an alternative place to shop and have recently identified two potential locations for development in Rockhampton.
"Construction of the stores will progress once council approval has been received and ALDI has a satisfactory DA, the timing of which is dependent on Council and The Department of Main Roads.
"When establishing a new store, ALDI considers the long term potential of the area and population numbers.
"We work closely with local planning bodies like council, other businesses and community groups to ensure ALDI will positively impact the community.
"We look forward to helping even more Queensland shoppers discover the benefits ALDI can bring to their wallets and lifestyles."
Cr Strelow said the move followed a lot of community pressure to bring the retailer here.
"The whole bring ALDI to Rockhampton has hinged on their being two sites that met their needs," Cr Strelow said.
"I'm delighted that they have persevered because I know there was a journey.
"As I understand it was ALDI's need to have the two - that's been the story since the very first time they came to have a look around here."
The two locations will add to ALDI's already 455 strong number in Australia.
Rockhampton residents have had a mixed reaction to the news on Facebook, although most are excited for the budget supermarket to open its doors.
When Cr Strelow was asked why Rocky residents have been pushing for the store for so long, she replied, "I've been told it's the chocolate really".
This development announcement comes on the back of yesterday's shock closure of Terry White Chemist and Priceline in Stockland, but Cr Strelow said that wasn't a sign of tough times ahead.
"I think it's a bit of a mixed bag in Rockhampton - we're having some bad news, some great news and I think they're not always related," Cr Strelow said.
INITIAL: FOR YEARS the Rockhampton community has been screaming out for ALDI to open in the region and the retail giant has revealed the news we've all been waiting for - ALDI is coming to Rockhampton.
But it gets even better - ALDI are officially opening not one, but two stores in the Beef Capital.
A development application has been lodged by ALDI over the vacant site next to Fantastic Furniture on Gladstone Road, Allenstown.
While the location of the second ALDI store is yet to be confirmed, the store could potentially form part of the mixed use proposal over the vacant site next to Spotlight on Yaamba Road, Park Avenue.
When the proposed Yaamba Rd development plans, which include a large supermarket, sports and lifestyle retailer Anaconda, a service station and two other tenancies, were revealed by The Morning Bulletin in August last year, reporters contacted ALDI to probe whether they would open at the site.
| READ MORE HERE |
Rockhampton Region Mayor Margaret Strelow said persistence has finally paid off after first contacting ALDI in 2013, expressing the community's desire to have the retail giant in the region.
"After being in talks with ALDI for three and a half years now, I am very excited to finally announce their presence in our Region and welcome them to our community," Cr Strelow said.
"As the project has gone through its various iterations, it has been frustrating at times when I have known what was happening and haven't been able to answer our community.
"I was waiting for them to have a go at me for harassment," she joked.
"I know I'm not the only one in the community who was making contact with them, but I am extremely delighted by the outcome."
In a letter to Council ALDI stated, "The feasibility of Rockhampton as a long-distance market for ALDI is contingent on two sites."
"This was even more good news for us knowing that, like many supermarkets, for ALDI to have a viable presence their business is dependent on two sites," Cr Strelow said.
While it is not yet confirmed when construction will begin on the Gladstone Rd site, Cr Strelow said there is one thing the region can look forward to.
"This means more jobs for local tradies in our region and a great deal of permanent employment opportunities once the doors open," she said.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.