16/02/2020 | Rob Lucas MLC

Coles Rundle Place has become the second supermarket in Rundle Mall to be granted a special State Government exemption to trade extended hours during the Superloop Adelaide 500 weekend.

This will enable them to cater for an influx of interstate and international tourists as well as tens of thousands of local motorsport and Adelaide Fringe festival fans.

Coles Group wrote to Treasurer Rob Lucas late last week requesting the exemption to trade later until 7pm on Saturday (February 22) and Sunday (February 23) under section 5 of the Shop Trading Hours Act 1977, following a similar request being made – and granted – to Woolworths Rundle Mall.

In its application, Coles said being able to trade extended hours would ‘satisfy the increased demand from customers to access groceries and fresh produce’ over the Superloop Adelaide 500 weekend.

Coles employs approximately 88 team members in its Rundle Mall store.

“We are confident that there would be ample numbers of employees who would elect to voluntarily work these extended hours,’’ said Coles SA general manager Sophie Wong.

Treasurer Rob Lucas said the Marshall Liberal Government was focused on growing the economy and creating more local jobs, and sensible shop trading reform was vital to support ongoing and further employment in the state’s retail sector.

“The brutal reality is that our shop trading laws are from a bygone era, before the rise of online shopping that increasingly competes with bricks and mortar stores for the consumer dollar.

“We know South Australians are crying out for greater freedom of choice in shop trading hours, while retailers just want to be able to serve their customers and open their doors when they choose.

“Sadly, the Shoppies Union and the Labor Party, led by former union boss Peter Malinauskas, want to deny South Australians that freedom of choice and put a handbrake on economic and jobs growth.”

Last year’s Superloop Adelaide 500 attracted an estimated 254,000 fans over 4 days – with 64,500 people attending on the Saturday, and a sell-out crowd of 90,000 people attending Sunday’s final race and after race concert. The Adelaide Fringe attracted almost 35,000 tourists in 2019.

Like Woolworths, this exemption allows Coles Rundle Place to open its more than 400sqm Rundle Mall store for an extra 4 hours in total, opening until 7pm (instead of 5pm) on February 22 and February 23.