The plan by the State Government to allow bottled wine to be sold by large supermarkets was always going to end badly.
Thankfully this has been recognised by Deputy Premier John Rau and the decision to abandon the proposal means an unpleasant chapter in SA’s retail history has been avoided.
The dominance of the two largest retail giants – Coles and Woolworths – has had an increasingly concerning influence on the retail landscape for several years.
The power they wield has been well documented as has the rising community uncertainty about their status.
Allowing such supermarkets to sell bottled wine was clearly going to drive smaller liquor shops out of business and would never have given smaller boutique wineries a foothold in the mainstream market, as it was claimed.
That is simply not the way these retail giants operate.
The State Government should be commended for its change of heart.
Lack of transport
Lack of public transport is a recurring complaint in the Hills.
Usually it is the case that the further out residents live, the greater the problem of access – but not necessarily.
Significant sections of the foothills close to Adelaide are now dormitory suburbs filled with Adelaide commuters.
Norton Summit is a prime example.
The beautiful little town is not populated by market gardeners and farmers anymore, and the State Government needs to recognise that financially inconvenient fact.
Whether good planning or not, the areas around Norton Summit, Teringie and Greenhill have become spacious urban fringes and it’s not unreasonable for locals to expect a basic commuter service.
It has a bus service to Norwood/Morialta High School – provided through the transport department but funded by the education department – so residential demand exists.
For the transport department to claim it needs to take into account “demand based on existing bus timetables” before considering adding a loop via Norton Summit and Old Norton Summit roads is ludicrous.
If there is no bus service, no-one can use it. Perhaps if the Government adequately consulted, advertised and trialled a morning and evening service, it might find that the commuters would come. It might even ease some pressure on the Crafers park n ride if the service appealed to workers heading to the eastern side of the city.