Historical: Call for tenders on $1.2 million Kooloonbung shopping centre

Works underway: Plaza Bridge, officially named the Sesqui-Centenary Bridge, under construction in 1967. In 1968, works on the planned Kooloonbung shopping centre were hoped to be completed in time for the sesqui-centenary celebrations in the October.
Works underway: Plaza Bridge, officially named the Sesqui-Centenary Bridge, under construction in 1967. In 1968, works on the planned Kooloonbung shopping centre were hoped to be completed in time for the sesqui-centenary celebrations in the October.

Events of the day as printed in Port Macquarie News on Tuesday, March 12, 1968. Supplied by Port Macquarie Historical Society.

Macquarie Waters Pty. Ltd. expects to call tenders for a $1.2 million shopping centre in the Kooloonbung reclamation scheme in four weeks. Mr Peter Vaggelas told the ‘News’ he expects to have the 60,009 square foot centre completed by August. This will allow the shops to be open for the sesqui-centenary celebrations in October. He said he already had tenants for 20 of the 35 shops. The new centre will consist of two shopping blocks, each with arcades.

Both blocks will be bounded by William Street to the south, but the first will be east of Short Street, adjacent to the R.S.L. Club, while the second will be west of the street, extending to the waterfront reserve.

Each block will have space for a large store the first block incorporating a store of 10,550 square feet and the second block a store of over 12,000 square feet.

The first block will have an indoor courtyard, built around a palm tree which now stands on the spot. Arcades will lead from the courtyard to William and Short Streets and Crisp’s Arcade. The second block will have arcades giving access to the new bridge, the car park and William Street.

An oil company has bought outright a service station site in the main intersection of William and Short Streets. Mr. Vaggelas does not envisage constructing further shopping centres for a while, but most of the eastern section of the reclamation has been set aside for this development.

On the western side, 35 blocks will be provided for erection of motels, flats and home units.

These blocks, all over 8,000 square feet, will be thrown open for outright sale when all roads in the subdivision are tarred - planned for the end of this month.

Mr. Vaggelas has already built one block of flats in Bridge Street, Which he has just sold for $43,000.

Construction will start soon on a block of home units on the waterfront, and three of the eight units have already been sold.

The developer has arranged to transplant palm trees from Ocean Grove Estate and farms onto the waterfront reserve.

The bridge is nearing completion, and approaches should be prepared in a fortnight.

Port Macquarie Score Treble in League

Playing at West Port Park on Sunday last Port Macquarie scored a treble over Taree-Old Bar in a trial Rugby League fixture. Port Macquarie ran out winners by 28-20 after the scores had been 10 – all at half-time.

Top game: Port Macquarie's fullback Barry Steep in the 1960s. On the field, Steep was always well-positioned and joined in well with the backline movements.

Top game: Port Macquarie's fullback Barry Steep in the 1960s. On the field, Steep was always well-positioned and joined in well with the backline movements.

Star of the match was brilliant outside centre John Steep, scoring three great tries and kicking one goal. Steep’s performance delighted the spectators and club officials. Steep’s brother, Barry, at fullback also gave an outstanding performance, being always well positioned and joining in well with the backline movements.

The team as a whole showed a great improvement on the previous week’s effort and with more pruning a really good side will develop.

All in all it was a day of mixed fortunes as Port lost their diminutive half-back ‘Monster’ Baldwin soon after the commencement of play with a suspected broken ankle. Taree-Old Bar lost their skipper with a broken nose.

Football match Westport Park, 1962.

Football match Westport Park, 1962.