Woolworths has launched a bid to open its first drive-through only store in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.
As part of a $560,000 proposed redevelopment, the supermarket giant is seeking to turn an old Rose Bay Caltex service station site into a dedicated pick-up site for customers collecting online orders.
There would be no in-store shopping at the site, with a small number of staff employed to drop grocery orders off to car boots.
It’s estimated about 100 customers a day would use the site, which would also generate up to 340 daily car movements.
Once operational, Woolworths expects the site to employ between two and eight people at any one time.
The site is also slated to become a base for other couriers delivering groceries throughout platforms like Uber Eats.
In a statement Wooloworths said its drive-through only plan would provide a reduced Covid risk to customers and help meet growing demand for online click-and-collect style shopping.
“Customers using this service will only be parked for a matter of minutes while they wait for their order to be delivered to their car, as opposed to a typical shopping trip which can take upwards of 30 minutes,” the company said.
While many shoppers will no doubt welcome the move, the proposal has been slammed Peter Morelli, the owner of Rose Bay’s iconic Parisis Food Hall.
“Personally, I can’t see the need for it and the traffic it will cause would be horrendous for surrounding residents,” he told the Wentworth Courier.
“I find the whole thing quite bizarre and it’s not good for small businesses because it could be detrimental to the village feel of our area.
“We have a lot of older customers … they love coming in to the store seeing the products and they have that relationship with the staff where we know them by name. They’re not able to shop online and the need for human interaction is always going to be there for people.”
Woollarah Council is assessing the Woolworths plan and will make a decision on whether or not to give it the green light in coming weeks.
Extracted from The Australian