Paledi Mall Revamped

Paledi Mall Revamped

Paledi Mall has more than doubled in size from 13 000m2 to a sizeable 32 000m2 with the latest revamp adding 7 000m².

The Paledi Mall, in Mankweng, rural Limpopo, has been extended for the second time since it was built in 2009, and now measures 32 000m².

This is a strong sign that retail in Limpopo is thriving, says developer Twin City COO Ryno de Leeuw.

“Paledi Mall has been substantially upgraded from a moderate-size shopping mall of 13 000m2 to a sizeable 32 000m2 with the latest revamp adding 7 000m². The exceptional trading that followed the completion of Paledi Mall’s second phase in 2015, led to the fast-tracking of phase three.

“Eleven of our Paledi Mall retailers have been with the mall since its inception. They all have good news stories to tell about the mall and their own profits and successes,” says de Leeuw. These include national brands such as Superspar and Tops, PEP, BuildIt, Lewis, JET, Nedbank, Furn4U, Best Electric, Sleebok Granite, as well as fashion and footwear chain Studio88.

The R133-million third phase (programmed over 18 months) will include the renovation of current anchor tenants, a reconfigured design, as well as the addition of new line shops.

“The mall design was reconfigured to ensure better shopper flow and to accommodate the relocation of Superspar as an anchor tenant,” says de Leeuw. “This, in turn, created an opportunity for more big-box retail, thereby strengthening Paledi Mall as a retail destination. The design also anticipates phase four, by ensuring future redevelopment will be easily accommodated.

“The look and feel perspective elements contained in phase two have been carried through to speak to our aspirational, young market. This will include a rebranding exercise in line with this strategy.”

“Our in-depth research showed that the two main reasons people visit Paledi Mall are for groceries and fashion,” says Gavin Tagg, chief executive of specialist retail agency Retail Network Services, which partners with Twin City on this project.

“The renovation has addressed this reality – we re-crafted the tenant mix to ensure that Paledi Mall remains relevant and continues to offer an enticing and exciting blend of retail experiences for its customers.”

Although all major banks have automated services in Paledi Mall, de Leeuw anticipates that the latest phase will see full-service offerings from all of them.

Known as a university township, Mankweng as a community is dynamic and attracts skilled professionals because the area houses Mankweng District Hospital and Nursing College, a regional magistrate’s court and a public library. Mankweng has grown rapidly over recent years, as residents near the university converted their homes into rentals to house the growing population of students from many parts of the country, with some coming from as far as East and North Africa.

“The University of Limpopo is just 4km away from Paledi Mall,” de Leeuw says. “With over 18 000 students and an expanding base of skilled professionals, it remains a catalyst for growth and development.”

Paledi Mall’s prime location is a key reason for its growth. Located just off the R71 arterial road between Polokwane and Tzaneen and the University road in Mankweng, Paledi Mall enjoys high visibility, large traffic volumes and is well-located in the developing residential fabric of the area. The R71 carries considerable amounts of commercial trucks, public and private traffic daily – it acts as a one-stop shop for those travelling between Polokwane and Tzaneen.

Its location – just 10km west of Moria – where seasonal pilgrimages significantly increase traffic on this already busy road – means that ongoing growth is virtually guaranteed. Between three and five-million worshippers make their way to Moria for their annual Easter pilgrimage.

Access is excellent too. There is a major transport hub adjacent to the mall – and two other formal taxi ranks/holding areas.

Mankweng is no longer considered as a village or township – it has grown beyond this and is now considered to be a town in its own right. De Leeuw says the ongoing growth offers retailers huge potential.

“Experts predict that the market size will be R4.3bn in 2020 – up from R2.1bn in 2013. This is a growth rate of more than 100% in seven years.”

The latest statistics on Paledi Mall reflect this strong growth: there are more than 16 200 registered users on the Paledi Mall WiFi network. On average there are 7 000 connections a month on the network.

“The annual foot count is also up by more than 11% in the past two years and up by almost 7% compared to one year ago,” de Leeuw says.

“What’s even more exciting is the growth in per capita income,” says de Leeuw. “The income bracket has changed upwards, and the primary catchment has strengthened. There is a growing middle to upper-class income sector in this node. The population growth in the primary catchment area over the past 15 years is another massive driver in retail spend.”

De Leeuw maintains that Twin City’s philosophy of close collaboration with the local community is central to the mall’s success. The shopping mall currently functions as a community centre and services the whole of Mankweng and the surrounding suburbs.

In an exciting new development, the revamped Paledi Mall will include an innovation hub for SMMEs and entrepreneurs. The facilities will include a range of services including free internet services, meeting facilities, workshops and programmes.

“The expansion of Paledi Mall remodels it from its earlier community-focused shopping centre to a small regional centre – increasing its ability to provide a wider retail variety and retain more customers. There is no longer any need for shoppers to travel as far as Polokwane for the full retail experience – they can find it all at Paledi Mall.

“The new, bigger Paledi Mall will enhance our customers’ shopping experience – and keep them coming back for more,” concludes de Leeuw.