Shoprite Coming To Ilupeju

South African supermarket giant, Shoprite, may soon open an outlet in Ilupeju. The continent’s biggest grocer is expanding its presence in Nigeria with 44 new outlets set to open across the country over the next three to four years.

The Chief Executive Officer of Shoprite, Mr. Whitey Basson, in a statement published in a Bloomberg report
on August 20, 2013, was quoted as saying the company saw scope for the new outlets in oil-rich Nigeria where its existing eight outlets are faring pretty well despite a tough economy. The new outlets will increase the number of Shoprite stores in Nigeria to over fifty.

One of them will be in Ilupeju, according to informed sources, who would rather remain anonymous as they are not officially authorized to comment on the issue at this time.

Those sources tell Ilupeju Today Newspaper that a vast tract of land has been acquired in Ilupeju for the
development of a shopping mall which will feature Shoprite as the anchor tenant.

That parcel of land is said to be located near the Industrial Crescent end of Town Planning Way and currently houses warehouses, office complexes, a trucking company, and numerous industrial concerns. The land is reported to be several hectares large, and will comfortably accommodate a shopping mall of the size required for a Shoprite outlet with ample space left over for parking and other services such as a a power generating plant, a loading dock, and waste collection and disposal facilities.

Current occupants of the space have been given until December 2013 to quit the premises, as development of the mall is slated to commence in January 2014. Construction is estimated to last one year.
Without a doubt, the establishment of a Shoprite in Ilupeju will bring benefits to the community. Other high-end retailers will piggy-back on Shoprite and open outlets in the Ilupeju mall. Deep-pocketed shoppers from both Ilupeju and neighbouring communities will come to spend money in Ilupeju, boosting the local economy. Local unemployment levels will drop as many of the shops in the mall will employ locally. Local artisans, local contractors, and locally sourced raw materials will be in greater demand. Support businesses will spring up in the vicinity of the mall.

The area surrounding the shopping mall and the entire Ilupeju environment will undergo gentrification, a process of urban renewal and rebuilding that will accompany the entry of Shoprite and other shops, as existing businesses, buildings, and infrastructure “pull themselves up by the bootstraps” to meet up to the aesthetic and modernistic standards of the new entrants. Property values in Ilupeju will soar.
The Local Government will generate more internally generated revenue(IGR) from the influx of shops and
shoppers, which, theoretically, will give it more disposable income to spend on roads, drainage, and other

The list of potential benefits is endless. Be that as it may, the presence of a Shoprite and a massive shopping mall in Ilupeju will not be without its drawbacks. Jobs will be lost in the businesses that have to give way for the mall and are unable to set up elsewhere. Traffic along the axis where the mall will be located could become a gridlocked nightmare, especially the area on Town Planning Way around the Odi Olowo LCDA Headquarters, GT Bank, and the Ilupeju Model Market which is already a mess during rush hour as motorists try to access Coker and Ikorodu Roads from the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway via Town Planning Way.

 Imagine several hundred more cars entering and exiting that “black hole” at 5pm every day! It
is guaranteed bedlam. Security could also become an issue, as the presence of a large number of shoppers is always a magnet for reprobates, scoundrels, and petty thieves. Then there is the environmental impact of such heavy commercial activity —- wear and tear on roads and other infrastructure, pollution, degradation of natural resources, and spoliation of open spaces and other community property.
These downsides in and of themselves do not outweigh the potential of having such a facility in Ilupeju. Besides, most, if not all, of the disadvantages can be ameliorated, in the opinion of a long-time resident, Joseph Emajevoko. Mr. Emajevoko believes that town planners can sort out the bottlenecks of traffic and the police are up to the task of beefing up security.

“I can’t wait for Shoprite to get here,” said the excited resident. “No longer will we have to go all the way to Ikeja Mall to enjoy Shoprite’s wide range of products, great prices, and excellent customer service.”
Get ready for a new shopping experience, Ilupeju.
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About Yemi Oloyede


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