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No supermarket in Braddon: Canberra's first world problems

Who needs Lonsdale Street Roasters when we can have an IGA.

Who needs Lonsdale Street Roasters when we can have an IGA. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Alright, we get it. There's nowhere on Lonsdale Street to buy an onion.

As a fellow Braddonite, I've also dealt with this first world problem. Can I be bothered walking to Canberra Centre to get the one ingredient I need for dinner?

Does Braddon really need an IGA?

Does Braddon really need an IGA? Photo: Rohan Thomson

But is this the justification one needs to call for a supermarket to be moved in across the road?

Justin Ryan certainly planted the seed in my mind that, hey, maybe we do need an IGA. Why the hell not, right? Braddon has just about everything else.

In fact, within a one-minute walk of my Braddon apartment, I can get my hands on some sourdough, books, alcohol, hipster clothing and I can even buy a second hand car. Soon, I'll be able to get some on-site brewed beer, book a holiday and get my glasses prescription filled too, all within a block of my house.

So why not just give us everything a suburb needs, and throw a supermarket in the mix too?

The response from Canberrans has been swift.

As one person in the office aptly responded to Justin's story: "Just walk to Supabarn, you lazy bastard."

After all, Supabarn and in fact all that the Canberra Centre has to offer, is just a 750 metre walk from the site that Mr Ryan has graffitied his message, at the corner of Mort and Elouera Streets.

And while you're in Canberra Centre, right next to Supabarn, you've got a fruit and veg store, Aldi, chemists, another bakery and pretty much everything else in this one, central spot. Not to mention, there's an IGA over on East Row. And a Handimart over on Lowanna Street, north of Haig Park.

How hard is it, really, to do that 1.5 kilometre round trip to town? To jump on your hipster bike and pedal those gruelling two minutes to Canberra Centre, throwing the essentials in your basket and getting home before the pot of water on the stove has even boiled?

We can all hear the cynics crying out from across Canberra: What more do these entitled, inner-city dwellers need?

I'll admit, it would certainly be handy. And I know a lot of my neighbours would agree.

But considering how horrendous traffic and parking is in Braddon at the moment, the thought of plonking a supermarket in there, and dealing with all those people "just ducking into the shops on the way home" makes me shudder.

And not to mention the potential negative impact on the local, independent businesses that make Braddon the suburb we're all so happy to call home.

We're pretty lucky to have just about everything we need at our doorstep, and even more just a five minute walk into town.

There's definitely some bigger issues out there, and Braddon pretty much has everything. Except an IGA. And that's fine by me.

  • Do you agree? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

23 comments

  • I am still hoping for a Coles or Woolworths in the city. Supabarn is such a rip-off and the produce is always pretty average. I go out to the airport to get my groceries..

    I wonder if the light rail stop will be close enough for the hipsters? We need to concentrate on the long term, develop London CCT and Capital Hill!

    Commenter
    Resident
    Location
    Akuna St
    Date and time
    April 30, 2014, 3:42PM
    • I think the hipster crisis is only temporary... You see being a hipster is about being "alternative " what’s happened is many many people have jumped on the bandwagon... therefore it’s becoming mainstream, therefore "un-cool" so I give it 6-12 months and the beards will be gone and sourdough supplies aplenty!

      Commenter
      Shogunmatty
      Location
      Reality
      Date and time
      April 30, 2014, 4:00PM
    • Why hope for Coles and/or Woolworths? They have a big enough share of supermarket sales in Australia - why give them any more?

      Commenter
      Mike
      Date and time
      April 30, 2014, 8:01PM
  • To be fair there are some parts of Braddon that would be closer to the Ainslie shops would be closer. Oh and the little mini mart in Lowanna sheet.

    Commenter
    Mat
    Date and time
    April 30, 2014, 3:47PM
    • Hi Lucy, perhaps you didn't realise this, but many of these people actually LIVE in apartments in the city or braddon, so parking won't be an issue because it's a matter of walking on the way home from work etc without having to go into the horribly busy Supabarn and doing the self-serve because there's only two aisles open and - well you get the idea. See, once we get more hotels and people living, there's a beauty in dashing across the road to your apartment and just grabbing a milk etc. I know Canberrans love to think about parking, but that's a suburban issue - for those who live in the city, we don't think about it. And to have people actually walking in the city on the weekends, is a good thing - crowds = vitality. :)

      Commenter
      Deni
      Date and time
      April 30, 2014, 3:48PM
      • Maybe a community funded IGA style co-op is the way to go...is the local community willing to put their money where their mouths are? I'd worry about an IGA surviving but if the community had an investment in it then it might be a goer.

        Commenter
        Nick
        Date and time
        April 30, 2014, 4:40PM
      • Deni, she was referring to others who don't live in Braddon. Putting an IGA there will encourage other people with cars. Thus causing more traffic.

        Commenter
        Lukesington
        Location
        Lyneham
        Date and time
        April 30, 2014, 4:45PM
      • I think she meant people who don't live in braddon ducking in on their way home from work and further congesting and already congested area. Your point for people walking in the city being a good thing only backs up the argument that people can walk to the superbarn/iga/convenience store in the city

        Commenter
        JC
        Date and time
        April 30, 2014, 9:42PM
      • JC, the point is the Braddon iga is for the inner city residents. The gungahlin belconnen and tuggeranong residents have their own little Igas they can go to on the way home with their own parking :)

        Commenter
        Deni
        Date and time
        May 01, 2014, 10:08PM
    • I haven't seen him for years but I used to know Justin reasonably well...say what you like about him but he definitely isn't lazy. I agree it seems like hopping on your bike and ducking into town would be a better option though. It's hard to imagine an IGA thriving there.

      Commenter
      Nick
      Date and time
      April 30, 2014, 3:52PM

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