11/05/2004 - 22:00

No avoiding the drive to Canning Vale

11/05/2004 - 22:00

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THERE’S a touch of irony in the fact that Robert Halliday has worked as CEO of Market City since 1999, not so much for his role but rather the location.

No avoiding the drive to Canning Vale

THERE’S a touch of irony in the fact that Robert Halliday has worked as CEO of Market City since 1999, not so much for his role but rather the location.

Mr Halliday was working at the Swan Brewery when the company announced its intention to move its premises to Canning Vale. Deciding that the fledgling industrial estate was too far from his home, he resigned and looked for new opportunities.

Fast-forward 26 years and Mr Halliday finds himself in a new role with a new employer – an employer that, like Western Australia’s iconic brewer, bases its operations at Canning Vale.

Market City is among the State’s most efficient government departments, with only three people directly employed and up to 1,500 doing business on site daily.

Market City is the distribution centre for WA’s fruit and vegetable industry, and has produce arriving and leaving 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Fruit and vegetable producers sell stock to wholesalers, who then pass it on to retailers.

The market moved from Wellington Street in 1989 to alleviate overcrowding, and because of the logistical difficulties of having large trucks in the CBD, with Canning Vale selected due to its central location and access to major roads.

Apart from a CEO, manager of corporate services and an administrative officer, all other services are contracted. This includes property and market management, accounting, security, cleaning, repairs and maintenance.

The Australian Quarantine Inspection Services has an on-site location, and regularly inspects produce valued annually at more than $450 million, made up of 135,199 tonnes of fruit, and 112, 729 tonnes of vegetables.

The Market Authority arranges long-term leases (usually seven years) with businesses that wish to operate from the premises. There are 100,968 square metres of total lettable area in the markets, and last year the occupancy rate was 98.4 per cent.

The authority has an annual income cash flow of approximately $10.2 million, largely made up of rental income.

Mr Halliday told WA Business News that, in terms of future growth, the markets were still expanding on the site, and development plans were under way for 14ha related to the produce facility.

“An important element of the future growth of Market City has been to encourage value adding businesses which process food on site” Mr Halliday said. 

This would be a potentially lucrative field for many companies and would enable the markets to expand into a distribution centre as well as a traditional market facility, he said.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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