Finishing touches: Workers hurry to fit out shops ahead of the opening of DFO Cairns tomorrow.
THE battling Cairns commercial sector is set for a massive boost with the opening of the DFO Cairns tomorrow.
When fully functional (possibly still a month away), the centre is expected to employ more than 400 staff and have a range of stores.
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Employers groups have lamented widespread job losses around town since the credit crisis began to bite earlier
this year and DFO should provide a significant economic injection.
Cairns Chamber of Commerce president Jeremy Blockey said the jobs boost was welcome.
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"The additional jobs that are being created come at a time when jobs are harder to come by," he said.
"In the long term it is a good addition to the retail mix of Cairns.
"It is also a much-needed facelift to one of the older shopping centres in the region."
DFO Cairns centre manager Barry Frame said it was exciting to be so close to opening.
"It has been 18 months and it is great to be ready to open," he said.
"The centre will be something different with a lot of brands that aren’t now in Cairns."
DFO Cairns is the eighth DFO shopping centre to open nationally and features a range of fashion, children’s wear, footwear, handbags, jewellery, accessories, manchester, sporting goods and apparel.
DFO management elected to open the centre while some stores were still fitting out in order to allow for Christmas shopping.
DFO will officially open its doors at 10am tomorrow.
The shopping centre will then be open seven days a week from 10am until 6pm.
The centre has been developed in what was formerly the Westcourt shopping plaza.
It is the first major retail centre development in the city proper since the opening of Cairns Central.
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