Lenard’s not chicken to be part of Port Village growth
POULTRY lovers will feel like doing the chicken dance after the announcement that popular franchise Lenard’s is to open at Port Village.
The retailer is the first confirmed outlets to move into a new space once the Port Village Shopping Centre expansion is complete.
Kator, a Brisbane-based firm, began a $10 million redevelopment of the site last year.
Once complete, Port Douglas’ main shopping hub will include a Target Country, eight new speciality stores and a bigger Coles.
Local couple Scott and Benoni Henderson jumped at the opportunity to set up a Lenard’s shop in the complex.
“It’s really the hub of Port Douglas,” Ms Henderson said.
“Everyone, whether they’re tourists or locals, comes in at some stage to go to Coles or the newsagency or to get a coffee so it’s really the only logical place to open a business.”
Kator general manager of operations David Smart said construction was on track to meet a November deadline.
Mr Smart said he expected Target Country to open at the start of next month and the Coles expansion to finish by early November.
“Target will bring something different to town - that’s what has driven the experience in our view - and the feedback we’ve had in the last few months is that it will be beneficial for Port Douglas,” he said.
“It will bring to the area things people currently have to go to Cairns for and keep more retail dollars in Port Douglas rather than in Cairns.”
Mr Smart said it had been difficult to attract some prospective tenants to sign leases for smaller retail spaces but the centre was a long-term project.
“It’s a very significant development for us - we’re a family business, the family live in Brisbane and we’re based in Brisbane - and it’s a very important asset to us,” he said.
“Admittedly we’re building at a time when economic circumstances are difficult but we’re building for the longterm.”
Ms Henderson said the couple, who currently work in tourism and retail, had wanted to go into business for themselves since 2006.
“We actually approached Lenard’s and they were very excited when they heard I’d found a suitable shop,” she said.
“They had been looking to come to Port Douglas for some time.”
Lenard’s will officially open in mid-September.
Redevelopment: Scott and Benoni Henderson are opening a Lenard’s franchise