MARYSVILLE — The Marysville Walmart store currently under construction at the intersection of State Route 9 and Highway 528 is aiming for an official grand opening by the middle of next year, according to company spokespersons.
Rachel Wall, senior manager of community affairs for Walmart, touted the new 150,000-square-foot Marysville Walmart store as a means of boosting the economic vitality of the east side of the city.
“Our wages and benefits are competitive with a majority of our Washington competitors, and our stores are often magnets for growth and development,” Wall said. “We look forward to engaging with Marysville residents to listen, answer questions and share information about our company. At the end of the day, we want our stores to reflect the communities where they are located and serve real customer needs.”
Gloria Hirashima, chief administrative officer and community development director for the city of Marysville, sounded a similarly positive note on the opening of a Walmart store south of Arlington and east of Tulalip.
“We’ve been working closely with Walmart since 2006 on their plans to build a new store in Marysville,” Hirashima said. “They’ll be opening a hiring office in Marysville soon, and we look forward to more local jobs for our residents, and to establishing a strong relationship with them as a corporate partner within the Marysville community.”
In addition to the temporary contract jobs during the store’s construction, company spokespersons anticipate that this Walmart Supercenter will create approximately 300 jobs for associates, after its hiring center is scheduled to open roughly around the spring of next year, to facilitate job placements in time for the store itself to open its doors by about the summer of 2013.
The new store’s selection is set to range from grocery and household items such as fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy products, a garden center, a drive-through pharmacy and vision center, to merchandise including apparel, home goods, health and beauty aids, and electronics.
As for the facility housing this shopping, company spokespersons touted its built-in sustainability, from its water‐conserving restroom fixtures and heat-reflective roofing to cut down on cooling costs, to longer-lasting LED illumination and a centralized energy management system to regulate energy use, refrigeration temperatures, lighting and the heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
Occupancy sensors are planned to be installed in most non-sales areas, whose sensors should automatically turn the lights off when the space is unoccupied. Walmart also aims to utilize xeriscape principles, leveraging drought tolerant plants to reduce water consumption.
Walmart’s average wage for regular full‐time hourly associates in Washington as of July 31 of this year is $13 per hour. Wall praised Walmart for its contributions to local charitable causes and credited its stores with being a significant source of sales tax revenue for local governments, an assessment which was echoed by Caldie Rogers.
“You couldn’t have a friendlier neighbor,” said Rogers, the president and CEO of the Greater Marysville Tulalip Chamber of Commerce. “People have asked me if the new Marysville Walmart means that the Quil Ceda Village Walmart is going out of business, to which I say no, there’s just that much business here for them that they need a second store to serve it all.”
Just as the Chamber did prior to the opening of the Quil Ceda Village Walmart, so too does Rogers plan to offer a free seminar for local small businesses to give them tips on how to collaborate with the new Walmart to their mutual benefit.
“If, say, you have an office supply store, you can go to the Walmart, give them your business card, and they’ll train their staff to tell customers, ‘If we don’t have it here, go to this store,’” Rogers said. “We can assuage their fears and increase their patronage.”
Rogers reported having followed up with local small business owners a few months after the opening of the Quil Ceda Village Walmart and received largely positive feedback.
“They’re not a threat, but a potential partner,” said Rogers, who pointed out that the Quil Ceda Village Walmart is a Chamber member. “They’re conscientious in their desire to support the community, and we’re grateful for the tax revenues they’ll be supplying to the city’s coffers.”