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Gateway Plaza Leopold

Lighting the way with a relaxed coastal vibe


We used a light touch with the existing footprint at Gateway Plaza. Our economical interventions transformed a small, internalised neighbourhood mall into a modern, light-filled regional development with a relaxed coastal vibe, space to socialise, and even-handed exposure and opportunities for retailers.

“We’ve all experienced lacklustre shopping centres with mean proportions and poor light. You want to get in and get out as fast as possible. This redevelopment feels open and light and right.”  

Teddy Chung, Associate 


We opened up the inward-looking mall and linked it to extra parking and an inviting, generously proportioned new centre with high ceilings, raked roof and abundant natural light from clerestory windows. Landmark ‘gateway’ buildings bookend the mall vista, orienting visitors and creating a focal point for socialising long after the shops have closed. By introducing a landscaped town square where families can dine and kids can play safely despite close proximity to the highway we’ve given the growing community much needed opportunities to hang out and socialise.  An earthy, almost domestic material palette takes its cues from the coastal environment and adds to the homely feel.


Gateway Plaza goes beyond the usual developer specs to create generous volumes, visible sky, and a lovely quality of light that leaves shoppers and retailers feeling comfortable, relaxed, and happy to hang out here. A clear arc with no underutilised ‘back end’ means equal exposure for all tenants, increasing commercial opportunities for everyone. Clear sightlines and easy access makes for improved visibility and enhanced safety, day and night. By incorporating landscape into the design vision from day one and ringing the town square with food and beverage and spaces to mingle and play we’ve activated a down-to-earth meeting place locals have warmly embraced.

“Schnitz, full. Hi Sushi, full. Kids crawling all over the playground. Teenagers laying on the grass listening to live music. Perfection. #enriching community experiences.” 

Lisa O’Halloran, Vicinity Centres


126 Bellarine Highway Leopold



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