Checkout at 40: SuperQuinn Announce Details Of Blackrock Store (Oct 1983)
This year, Checkout commemorates its 40th anniversary and with this in mind, every week, Retail Intelligence is going to ‘reel in the years’ and publish a story from our extensive archives. This feature from October 1983 discusses the upcoming opening of the new Superquinn shopping centre in Blackrock, Co. Dublin.
Work on Superquinn’s new £9m shopping centre complex in Blackrock, Co. Dublin is well on target. Foundations have been laid and shell structures have begun to emerge on the 3.4-acre island site, which ultimately will house 50 retail shops and restaurants, and a 32,000 sq. ft. supermarket.
Opening is planned on a phased basis between May and October of next year, according to Superquinn’s Alan McDonnell, with the official ceremonies scheduled for this time next year. “We hope,” he said, “to have the supermarket in operation by May.”
Precise details about the supermarket layout are still in the planning stages, but, according to McDonnell, a number of wholly new retailing concepts are to be featured. “In the past six months, our staff have looked at stores in the United States and on the Continent,” he said. “This process is continuing and we hope to incorporate many of the concepts we have seen there in our new store.”
Describing it as “premature” to disclose any of its other plans, McDonnell did say however that the Blackrock store, which will be considerably larger than supermarkets in the two nearest shopping centres, will be licensed and will have four ‘kitchens’, salad, sausage, bakery and pizza.
“South Dublin is one of the most health-conscious areas in the country,” he stated, “and we intend to supply our customers with the complete range of Superquinn fresh foods.”
Apart from its location in the heart of Dublin’s affluent suburbia, the new complex will also benefit from what must be the highest visibility of any recent shopping centre in Dublin.
The centre is set beside one of the busiest commuter arteries into Dublin, where a recent traffic count put the number of passing vehicles at 40,000 each day.
Most of these cars belong to people who will be prospective shoppers at Blackrock Centre, and Superquinn believes that the buildings of the centre itself will be a daily self-advertisement.
“With this in mind,” Feargal Quinn, managing director, Superquinn, said, “the brief to architects Keane Murphy Duff was quite specific. The aim was to produce a centre that would be visually striking and of the highest architectural quality, but which would at the same time integrate successfully with the existing village in Blackrock.”
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