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Aldi to open in Ballinrobe


WORK IN PROGRESS  The site on The Neale Road in Ballinrobe where work has started on the new Aldi store.

Ciara Galvin

RETAIL discount chain Aldi will open in Ballinrobe this summer. The German supermarket will be located on the town’s Neale Road. Construction began on the site last month.
The 15,000-square-foot site, located inside the town’s boundary, was purchased from local businessman John Vaughan. Stewart Construction has been awarded the contract build, with delivery time expected to be between mid May and early June. The construction company has completed over 70 stores to date for Aldi Ireland Ltd.
According to the construction company’s website, a new build can be estimated at up to €3.7 million, and stores generally range in size from 1,200 to 1,500 square metres roughly, with some exceptions.
Aldi has over 10,000 stores in 18 countries, and an estimated combined turnover of more than €50 billion. The chain was founded by brothers Karl and Theo Albrecht in 1946 when they took over their mother’s store in Essen, Germany.
Welcoming the news, Fianna Fáil councillor Damien Ryan said anything that creates jobs in the town is a positive.
“We’re in competition with Galway and towns on that periphery, we’re in a rat race and need to be at the forefront of attracting them [businesses].”

Addressing some queries around the location of the supermarket, Cllr Ryan said that while the new store was not in the heart of the town, it was still within Ballinrobe’s town boundaries.
“In an ideal world it would be great if it was situated in the centre of the town, but at least you don’t have a situation where it is the other side of the town creating a retail park; it’s better to balance it.”
Asked why a nearby unfinished site was not offered to Aldi Ireland Ltd, Cllr Ryan said that Mayo County Council has ‘no jurisdiction’ on that site and could not offer it for possible development, as it is in ‘private ownership’.
Addressing the issue of increased traffic to the town, Cllr Ryan believes those using the store would not be going there at ‘peak times’.
“It’s a new facility, creating jobs, footfall … People are going to other towns [for discount stores], so anything that comes here is better and is a benefit,” said the councillor.