Wal-Mart has hopes for east Carson location

As if Carson City were hurting for retail choice, Wal-Mart plans to add another outlet to serve the east end of town and the Highway 50 corridor.

"We are looking to open another store in Carson City," Wal-Mart spokeswoman Amy Hill said Wednesday. "Probably somewhere in the Highway 50 East area, in order to capitalize on growth in Dayton and Silver Springs."

Hill said the company has not designated a specific site, or set a target opening date.

"Nothing has been bought yet," she said.

If built, a new Carson City Wal-Mart will recoup at least some of the tax revenue expected to be lost when the current Wal-Mart on South Carson Street moves across the Carson City/Douglas County line.

In January, the company announced it will open a new 223,901 square-foot Supercenter just north of Home Depot on Highway 395, and plans to close its existing store in Carson City sometime in late spring 2002.

Construction crews have been working on adjacent roadway improvements, with store construction expected to start in fall. The new building and parking lot will be situated on Gross Circle at the former site of 24-Hour Fitness. Wal-Mart, which owns its current building, has not announced a replacement tenant.

Sales tax revenue generated by Wal-Mart is one of the biggest contributors to Carson City's budget, accounting for approximately $1 million annually, or 2.5 percent of an almost $40 million budget.

For years the company has expressed interest in expanding its Carson City operation to offer grocery shopping, but a clause in the property deed prevented Wal-Mart from creating a competitive environment with its neighbor, Raley's supermarket.

City leaders made efforts - including attempting to broker a deal with Raley's and offering several Carson City sites - to retain the retail giant and its millions in local sales tax revenue.

Expansion to grocery sales would also require an upgrade in size, which would be substantial for the approximately 120,000 square-foot building. The company would have preferred to expand the current building. Wal-Mart has been in Carson City since 1991.


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