With an official grand opening celebration slated for Jan. 16 at 8 a.m., Walmart Neighborhood Market employees are busy unboxing products and stocking shelves for the big day.
Located on the 2800 block of North Broadway in East Lake View, the more than 33,000-square-foot grocery store is located where World Market and Petco once stood. It’s also right next door to the upcoming Walgreens flagship store.
However, while construction at the neighboring Walgreens has been delayed by almost a year, the new Walmart Neighborhood Market is exactly on schedule. The store’s Assistant Manager Nicole Gillespie says it’s all about staying focused while facing potential issues as not to disrupt the flow of the whole team.
“Things are going as well as they could have planned,” Gillespie said while giving Patch a tour around the new store.
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But while walking through the store, only certain sections were allowed to be photographed before the big unveiling in January. Bare shelves or coolers, including the entire freezer section, were among areas that were off limits.
And while employees stocked shelves in nearly ever aisle, a Walmart representative addressed concerns from residents regarding the types of jobs the store is creating. After a jobs report in October revealed the store would create roughly 125 new jobs, some wondered how many would be full-time, part-time or just temporary to help prepare the store to open.
The representative said that 45 percent of current employees are full-time, while the remaining 55 percent are “peak-time,” and zero temporary positions. However, after more positions are filled, 55 percent are slated to be full-time workers, with the rest “peak-time,” and zero temporary employees.
Gillespie says every employee at the Walmart Neighborhood Market will attend the grand opening on Jan. 16.