Woolworths is increasingly becoming a spot of bother for residents, with the supermarket giant’s continued attempts to develop mixed-use precincts and retail centres constantly being met with uproar from local communities.

North Sydney Council and its residents recently put the stops on a development application floated by the supermarket to upgrade and extend its Neutral Bay store (renders pictured) and to add a six-storey multi-residential complex above. The proposal was designed by Koichi Takada Architects.

woolworths neutral bay development renders

Mosman Council was also at loggerheads with the supermarket recently, going to court over the construction of a new Woolworths Metro. Woolworths eventually came out on top following a drawn out court battle in the Land and Environment Court. South of the border, local council twice rejected a Woolworths mixed-use development at Elsternwick in Melbourne’s south-east, with the supermarket eventually having the development approved following an appeal process.

North Sydney Mayor Zoe Baker believes Woolworths should be classed as a developer that disguises its residential projects as supermarkets, with renders of potential projects serving to persuade communities.

“We cannot have our eyes bedazzled by pretty pictures,” she says.

woolworths neutral bay development renders

Woolworths recently acquired the site of a former Caltex service station in Rose Bay. The supermarket plans to create a small store and pocket park on the ground level, with 20 apartments sitting above. Woolworths has also acquired a former Caltex on Enmore Road in Sydney’s west for $6 million.

“I personally don’t think we need another of the big chains here, and any new open space is always welcome,” Inner West Greens Councillor Liz Atkins tells the Sydney Morning Herald.

Woolworths General Manager of Property Development, Andrew Loveday, says the supermarket is continually looking to implement supermarkets and residences in places it believes is ideal to do so.

“We acknowledge there is not always consensus on proposals which feature changes, but we will always listen and where possible incorporate changes into our plans.

woolworths neutral bay development renders

“We look forward to continuing to work with communities in local areas where we are privileged to operate.”

The rejection from North Sydney Council for the Neutral Bay development has seen Woolworths ask the Sydney North Planning Panel to review the proposal. The Planning Panel has the ability to overrule council decisions if it sees fit.