Walmart Hits Tucson Retail Market with Five New Mega Projects

Walmart has launched three supercenters and two neighborhood stores in Tucson. The retail properties are in various stages of development. The discount retailer has identified Tucson as an area that is underserved when it comes to affordable shopping options, according to Walmart officials quoted in the Arizona Daily Star.

Walmart has launched three supercenters and two neighborhood stores in Tucson. The retail properties are in various stages of development.

The discount retailer has identified Tucson as an area that is underserved when it comes to affordable shopping options, according to Walmart officials quoted in the Arizona Daily Star.

The five new Walmart projects are:

  • The Bridges, Kino Parkway and 36th StreetIts. Walmart’s largest retail store in Tucson is a 156,000 square-foot supercenter due to open later this year. It will hire about 250 people.
  • A smaller Walmart supercenter, in the 90,000 to 100,000 square-foot range, in El Con Mall, near East Broadway and North Alvernon Way. The construction of the project will begin this fall, with a grand opening projected for late 2013. The project was delayed by stiff opposition from a Neighborhood Association, which had sought to invalidate a 2000 development agreement between the City of Tucson and the mall’s owners.
  • Another supercenter on the vacant land at 2711 S. Houghton Road. Walmart bought the site for $3.3 million. Currently being built, the supercenter should open in the first quarter of 2013.
  • Rolling Hills Shopping Center, 2554, 2560 and 2570 S. Kolb Road. Arizona Daily Star reports that Walmart purchased this center for about $2.9 million. The retailer plans to redevelop the property into a Walmart Neighborhood Market, which is planned to open next year.
  • Walmart Neighborhood Market, on the southwest corner of East Broadway and Camino Seco. The existing structure, Berkshire Village Plaza, will be demolished and replaced by a new 40,000 square-foot Walmart store, which should open early next year.

Analysts are still skeptical about Tucson’s retail real estate recovery. They believe it to be held back by slow local job growth, shaky consumer confidence, credit rating downgrades and the Euro debt crisis. Nevertheless, the second quarter saw an uptick in activity among small tenant and local merchants, which had been missing in recent periods,” said Nancy McClure, first vice president at CBRE specializing in retail properties.

Photo credits: Flickr user Ron Dauphin

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