In news that is sure to shake cut-price homemakers to the very core of their beings, it has been confirmed that a suburban Kmart will be closing its doors before the end of this year. The devastating news was delivered yesterday, when it was revealed that the Kmart at Northcote Plaza would be closing its doors this November, after an almost 40-year tenure at the iconic retail venue.
The demise of a suburban Kmart is almost unheard of these days, thanks to the retail chain’s dominant resurgence in recent years, leading to the store earning cult status in suburban households across the nation. The news is even more puzzling when you realise that Northcote Plaza is actually home to two separate Coles supermarkets that are a mere couple of hundred metres from each other.
While one of the Coles at Northcote Plaza was originally a BI-LO, before being swallowed up by its parent company in the mid-2000s, the co-existence of two seemingly identical supermarket chains has perplexed residents of the inner north for many years. One anonymous resident said, “It’s all very confusing if you ask me but, by golly, everyone has their preferred Coles, that’s for sure. It’s fierce rivalry between the two. I’m more of a traditional Coles patron, so I wouldn’t be caught dead in the so-called ‘Separation Street’ store. No thanks.”
Local retail industry expert Cameron Salisbury told The Watsonia Bugle, “It’s an odd one, let’s be honest. Kmart is pretty much a license to print money these days, and you’d think the ability to sustain two Coles supermarkets in one complex would provide more than enough confidence to continue running a Kmart well into the future. But if there’s one thing I know about Northcote Plaza, after years and years of in-depth research, that place is its own entity. It’s like a time capsule. It has been bucking wider industry trends for decades now. I gave up trying to analyse trends in that place ages ago. It’s still got a bloody CD shop for goodness sake. It’s super bizarre.”