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2004-08-31
Gilbert, AZ. Wal-Mart Willing to Shrink Store Size

Residents of Gilbert, Arizona have been fighting Wal-Mart proposals in their community since at least 1999. Like a bad penny, Wal-Mart keeps turning up. This week, citizens got a glimpse of the retailer's latest attempts to win over minds in Gilbert -- with a "smaller" store. Last night's meeting was part of a three evening dog and pony show by Wal-Mart at the local Junior High School. According to the Arizona Republic, Wal-Mart displayed plans for a "scaled-down" supercenter in Gilbert yesterday. But one neighbor had it right. "I do not want them behind my house - they're going to cost me thousands of dollars in property value," he told city officials. The Wal-Mart model is their so-called "Urban 99" store, a 99,000 s.f. supercenter that was originally designed to creep under a 100,000 s.f. cap on building size in Tampa, Florida. This "small" store is still two times the size of a football field, but half the volume of the typical 200,000 s.f. supercenter. The Urban 99 stores have been proposed in Utah and in Florida. These smaller versions don't come with the same product selection and don't have an auto tire and lube departments. It's like Wal-Mart without wheels. But most people in the crowd of more than 100 people remained opposed to the project.

What you can do: For earlier stories on Wal-Mart's failed efforts to get into Gilbert, search this Newsflash page by the name of the city. For stories on this "Urban 99" model, search by the word "Urban".










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

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