Wal-Mart is opening metro Augusta’s first grocery-format store Oct. 2 in a Martinez shopping center.
Employees are spending this week stocking shelves in the Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market at 3851 Evans to Locks Road. The store will anchor the Village at Furys Ferry and replace a Food Lion that closed in February 2012.
In May, the company embarked on a
$1.9 million renovation project to transform the vacant space into a prototype of its smaller-scale stores.
“It’s designed for an easy, convenient way for customers to get in and out, and still get the same Wal-Mart prices without having to go the big Supercenter,” said Tim Miller, the manager.
The 36,000-square-foot Neighborhood Market is about one-fifth the size of a typical Wal-Mart Supercenter, which employs about 300 associates. Nearly 100 people have been hired to work at the Martinez store, Miller said.
The nearest market store to Augusta was in Atlanta, Miller said.
The 24-hour store will carry groceries, household supplies, and health and beauty products.
It will have an infant department, pet section and pharmacy.
Miller said other businesses in the shopping center likely will benefit from the market.
“Wal-Mart drives a lot of foot traffic,” he said. “The foot traffic will help all of these neighboring stores.”
Wal-Mart launched the Neighborhood Market concept in 1998 and has since built about 200 stores in the U.S. The corporation announced plans earlier this year to open about 115 Neighborhood Market centers this fiscal year.