Work officially started on the multimillion dollar Huntlee Shopping Centre on Tuesday, with a sod turning ceremony at the site.
As part of the highly-anticipated development, Huntlee, the first new town to be built in the Hunter in more than 50 years, will welcome its first major retailer and a significant boost in local employment.
The Coles-owned Huntlee Shopping Centre will create more than 120 new retail jobs - in addition to jobs generated during the construction period - and will offer residents an enhanced shopping experience and a one-stop-shop in the heart of the Huntlee Town Centre.
The development will include a state-of-the-art 3200 sq/m Coles supermarket, an adjacent 200 sq/m Liquorland, approximately 1000 sq/m of specialty retailers and 240 convenient, shaded car spaces.
The full-line, market style Coles supermarket will feature an in-store bakery, open-style meat department, a large gourmet deli and fresh produce area, and an expansive convenience range.
To celebrate the occasion, the Mayor of Cessnock, Cr Bob Pynsent, Coles State Development Manager, Howard Hathorn and Huntlee Project Director, Stephen Thompson unveiled a large steel plaque at the future entrance to the centre.
The Huntlee Shopping Centre is expected to be completed by mid-2020.