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Bellevue, Are You Ready for Walmart? First of Two Stores to Open Next Week

The Kelsey Creek Walmart is set to open on Friday June 29, with a grand opening celebration starting at 7:30 a.m.

 

Bellevue, a city without Walmart, is set to get its first of two within a year, withthe grand opening celebration of the store set for next Friday, June 29.

The store is located at the location of the old K-Mart at , at 148th Ave. and Main St. The K-Mart location had been dormant for a decade, but after , the site also has a new LA Fitness at the old K-Mart location, as well as other new tenants.

The Kelsey Creek Walmart is being called a "Neighborhood Market," with a floor plan of about 65,000 square feet, which is a smaller footprint than Walmart’s typical full-service store format, according to the company. Instead of the store's typical stock of merchandise, the store will focus on groceries.

It's just the first of two Walmart stores set to open in Bellevue. The second, at the where the Mervyn's closed five years ago, is slated open later this year. That one will be a more typical Walmart store, with 76,000 square feet and the typical array of merchandise, including groceries, clothing, electronics and other household goods.

The Walmart company squashed rumors back in April that it was considering opening a grocery store in the .

Not everyone in Bellevue is happy about the coming of the new stores. The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union last month protested a Bellevue Chamber of Commerce appearance by Jennifer Spall, the company's director of public affairs for Oregon and Washington.

Labor and community advocacy group Puget Sound Sage issued a study by researcher Christopher Fowler that claimed that each Walmart store in the Puget Sound area would result in a loss of millions in economic output and wages earned, according to Supermarket News, though Walmart responded by saying that Fowler's figures were inaccurate and his analysis outdated.

But what about you? Are you planning to shop at either the Kelsey Creek or Factoria Walmart stores, or will you avoid them?

John Snow June 25, 2012 at 05:52 PM
Good on you, Bellevue! Walmart has a proven track record of killing small towns, small businesses nearby, and a proven track record of driving wages down to the point that their workers rely on government assistance for such things as health care, even while holding jobs. If you want to kill jobs and small businesses, let Walmart in. Bellevue will probably find that its net economic benefit from Walmart turns out to be a deficit.
Mark Skattum June 25, 2012 at 10:34 PM
Who cares? The money mongrels don't! Given the Sq ft price of retail on the Eastside ($25), the monthly rent check from a warehouse/eyesore store(sickness), more than pays for the ugly conscience, worker's needs and community's crap arrangement. But, a Walmart? At long last sir, have you no decency?
JJ June 26, 2012 at 02:11 PM
I sure hope both of you stopped by on the day they announced they were taking applications for workers. Both locations had people lined up for blocks. (And please don't say that shows the sad reality for employment in today's market. Thousands of other jobs in the Puget Sound {requiring an education} are going wanting).
Mark Skattum June 26, 2012 at 05:04 PM
Nice to see someone reply to their own statement. The 'sad reality' although, is in your words 'requiring education'! While I wholly agree that we need a discounted source for any type of needs, Sam is taking advantage of the 'sad reality' and getting away with sub-par employee health care, unsafe, sexist environments and minimal wages. But, that's all hooey when 'any job' is needed. Hence, the blocks long lines full of 'sad realities'!

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