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Wal-Mart on Schedule to Open in Summer 2012

Wal-Mart Says Its Future Store on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive Will Open As Planned; Still No Immediate Plans to Build a Wal-Mart Along Cascade Road

Wal-Mart is on schedule to start building a new store in Historic Westside Village this summer and open it in the summer of 2012, a company spokesman said.

“I haven’t seen anything that would delay us,” said Glen Wilkins, Wal-Mart’s senior manager of public affairs for the Southeast.

The opening can’t come soon enough for Jane Nho. She works in the Beauty Depot next to the future Wal-Mart, to be located at 825 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, across from the original Paschal’s restaurant.

“Wal-Mart will be good for business,” Nho said. “Wal-Mart will attract a lot of people.”

Meanwhile, Wal-Mart has no immediate plans to build a store at a site along Cascade Road, Wilkins said. The developer of that site successfully sued Fulton County in 2006 to win zoning approval for a store measuring up to 185,000 square feet.

Wal-Mart does retain an option to build at the site, located near the northwest corner of I-285 and Cascade Road, Wilkins said.

“There’s still an interest in the area and Wal-Mart is still considering it,” Wilkins said of the Cascade Road site. “No final decisions have been made. We want to make sure we understand that market.”

Jerome Russell, the developer working with Wal-Mart at the Historic Westside Village site, said the project is going “full bore.”

Russell said he expects to complete a land transaction with the city by this summer to acquire the acreage needed to build an 80,000-square-foot Wal-Mart. The new store will be nearly three times larger than the store vacated by the former tenant, a Publix grocery store.

The size of the planned Wal-Mart represents the wave of the future for Wal-Mart.

Wal-Mart built successful franchise based on stores measuring about 200,000 square feet. But the company is downsizing some new stores in urban areas in the face of seven consecutive quarters of declining domestic sales.

“This really is about fitting into the community and understanding that each community is unique,” Wilkins said. “It’s also about efficiency.”

Nationally, Wal-Mart’s come-back strategy also calls for returning to its original mission of offering the lowest cost on all items, and of being a one-stop-shop for households earning $30,000 to $70,000 a year, according to an interview with Wal-Mart domestic chief William Simon, which appeared in the March 21 edition of The Wall Street Journal.

Wal-Mart’s market cap is about $189.3 billion and shares have been hovering around $52, down from about $60 in mid 2008.

Sonya Moste, spokeswoman with the Atlanta Development Authority, the city’s development arm, said the Wal-Mart will provide many more products than the now-shuttered Publix grocery store.

“It will have a pharmacy, and the residents in that area need a pharmacy,” Moste said. “The old Publix may have lost sales to stores that offered pharmacies.

“We are thrilled Wal-Mart is coming in to eliminate one of Atlanta’s far-too-many food deserts,” Moste said. “We want to do all we can to eliminate them in Atlanta.”

Russell has come full circle in developing Historic Westside Village.

Russell was one of the initial bidders to develop the city-backed site in the mid 1990s. Atlanta picked another development team, and the development fell apart because of bungling that federal authorities attributed to meddling by the administration of then-Mayor Bill Campbell.

Russell is picking up where that troubled project was halted.

Russell’s firm built a condo community that’s part of the overall Historic Westside Village project. Russell said the Wal-Mart should help boost sales of the condos, because of the proximity to a full-fledged grocery store and pharmacy. Prices have been reduced to below $80,000.

“We think the Wal-Mart will help,” Russell said. “We’re ecstatic.”

Gloria Poe April 06, 2011 at 03:21 PM
I really need a Wal-Mart on Cascade. I had to buy tissue and paper towels at the grocery today because I was out of both. I like to buy in larger quantities, but the older I get the further Target at Camp Creek seems!
Queen J April 06, 2011 at 04:58 PM
I live in the Cascade area and the closest Wal-Mart is 1100 Thornton Rd Lithia Springs, GA 30122. Its off of Camp Creek Parkway.
Linda Porter April 07, 2011 at 06:18 PM
When you have a company that large in your neighborhood, it make is hard to control what happen in your neighborhood and you cannot spend enough money to defend your neighborhood from their legal team. Also there goes any type of creative business that might come to your neighborhood because they cannot compete against a company as large as Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart is not that cheap anyway. Their prices are really up there now. I have gotten more things at a better price at Kroger than at Wal-Mart. I started out with Wal-Mart but changed to Kroger to shop more. We should be asking Kroger to put a gasoline station at our location in the Cascade and Headland areas. We could save as much as $.10 per gallon. We as black people should be opening our own businesses and not letting businesses such as Wal-Mart take control of our neighborhoods. Where is our growth as a people economic wise?
Queen J April 07, 2011 at 08:09 PM
good point Linda. I really try not to shop at Wal-Mart after watching a documentary about Wal-Mart Called "High Cost for Low Prices" its very good and mind blowing. wal Mart does drive mom/pop/smaller businesses away
Janita Poe April 07, 2011 at 09:59 PM
Thanks for the well-expressed comment about Wal-Mart, Linda. Would you be interested in putting together a Letter-to-the-Editor on this for Cascade Patch? We want readers to engage regularly on Cascade Patch by contributing events, announcements, comments and news tips. Thanks, so much, for engaging on our site (same to you Queen Jay and others who post regular comments! We are always happen to hear from you!)
Deanthony June 18, 2012 at 05:24 PM
When are you guys going to open up the wal-mart on martin luther king jr drive because we need that in this community plus i am looking for a job
Darrell July 17, 2012 at 02:43 PM
When are you going to be taking applications for this store?
Robert Clark August 08, 2012 at 03:02 PM
I would like to apply for a job at this location.
Robert Clark August 08, 2012 at 03:04 PM
I would like to apply for a job at this store location.
Robert Clark August 08, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Will you be hiring soon?
Harvey Davis October 05, 2012 at 12:49 AM
Actually word is WalMart has filed design and construction plans with Fulton County for the Cascade Super Walmart (by the Home Depot at Cascade and I-285), all construction permits are approved and construction of the WalMart is anticipated to begin this month..
judy Horn February 20, 2013 at 09:10 PM
The Walmart on MLK IS JUST BADDDDDDDD!!!!!!! SHOPLIFTING ALL READY. I fill like the Wal- mart on Howell Mill is way better then the one on MLK. That Wal-mart Sucks!!!!!!!!!!

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