FROM painting to pouring concrete, the new Park Avenue shopping complex is an absolute hive of activity as tradies work to deliver an early Christmas present to the residents of north Rockhampton.
The new $7 million development on Main St, which includes a Supa IGA, childcare centre and four speciality stores, is rapidly taking shape with developers Steve Kay and Vince Catanzaro revealing customers should be able to visit the centre by November.
The Stanthorpe-based developers visited the construction site this week along with commercial leasing consultant Brian West and the operator of the new childcare centre, Brian Westerhout.
With construction of the childcare centre having reached the painting stage this week, Mr Westerhout was excited to lock-in an opening date of October 2 for My School Child Care and Kindergarten Park Avenue.
"It has come along really nicely and is a lot further advanced than I thought it would be," Mr Westerhout said.
"We are doing a natural theme outside with gardens, paths, rocks and logs for the kids to play on.
"We are excited to be opening here in Rockhampton. We can cater for children from birth through to school age. We are a five room centre and can have 75 kids here a day. We are really looking forward to it."
Mr Westerhout said the hunt for staff to run the child care centre would begin soon.
"We'll be looking for directors, kindy teachers and cooks for a total of about 20 staff. We will probably get up to 30 staff once we are full," he said.
With the child care centre on track, the focus has turned to securing tenants to fill the three to four retail spaces which will complement the Supa IGA.
Leasing consultant Brian West said discussions were well under way with a local cafe operator and bottle shop operators.
"We have been talking to a couple of bottle shop operators and there is some interest there," Mr West said.
"We would specifically like to get some more food operators in here like a Thai or Mexican or something along those lines.
"Somewhere people can quickly grab some takeaway food is going to really work well for this area.
"We are really picking and choosing who we deal with. We want to know that they have a good business plan and it;s going to be good for the long term of this centre and park avenue.
"A couple of the operators we are talking to, two of them are local who have other businesses here so we've looked at their other businesses and we are happy to have them as tenants."
Mr West said if four food operators open in the complex, upwards of 40 jobs could be created along with a further 50 within IGA alone.
"There's potentially over 100 people to be employed from this project," Mr West said.
"We are really impressed with how its coming up, everything seems to be on time and the project should be open later this year."