Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New Wal*Mart Opens Wednesday

A new Walmart opens this month in Onley, bringing approximately 350 planned new jobs, savings on a full line of groceries and an increase in tax revenue to support the area's economy. Nonprofit organizations will also benefit from the retailer's ongoing charitable contributions and support for community projects. The Walmart, located at 26036 Lankford Highway, will be open to customers at 8 a.m., Wednesday, July 21.

"We are excited to have Walmart here on the eastern shore of Virginia. For years our residents had to travel to Tidewater or Maryland to enjoy shopping at these stores," said Jeff Davis, president, Eastern Shore of Virginia Chamber of Commerce. "Not only will it now mean greater product selection and competitive pricing, it will mean important jobs to our workforce. We look forward to a long and positive relationship with Walmart and are pleased that they have elected to join our Eastern Shore of Virginia Chamber of Commerce."

Store Designed to Improve Customer Experience
In recent months, Walmart has taken major steps to refresh its stores, merchandising and customer experience. The improvements have all come together in the company's newest stores, such as the Onley Walmart.

The new Walmart features wide aisles, enhanced service and a layout designed to make the shopping experience more convenient for customers. Walmart aligned the departments that customers shop most frequently. The pharmacy, for example, is adjacent to food making it easier for customers to pick up their prescriptions while shopping for their groceries.

"The layout of the store is easy to navigate, which will save our customers time as they shop for everyday necessities," said store manager Frank Durst. "By grouping the products that our customers most often purchase including health and beauty and pet supplies, we are making one-stop shopping even easier."

A bright interior color palette creates an inviting shopping experience and helps define the store's merchandise areas. Lower shelving creates an improved sightline and directional signage on every aisle helps customers find what they are looking for quickly. Walmart also combined the customer service desk, Site-to-Store pick-up location and photo lab in one area near the entrance. Customers now have easy access to these services, as well as associates on hand to help meet their needs.

The store's opening has created approximately 350 new jobs. Three of the stores associates have worked for Walmart for more than 10 years. Durst began his Walmart career in 1993 as an hourly associate at a store in La Vale, Md.

Store Design Incorporates Environmentally Friendly Features:
The Onley Walmart, like all new Walmart stores, includes energy-efficient technology and environmentally friendly features to reduce energy and water consumption and minimize waste. The store's skylights harvest daylight and reduce the amount of energy required to light the store by up to 75 percent daily. LED lighting in the store operates 70 percent more efficiently than traditional fluorescent lighting.

The cement used in the concrete flooring is made with recycled materials, and the floors finish reduces the need for chemical cleaners. Low-flow toilets and faucets reduce the water used in the bathrooms. The new store also operates a recycling program and will promote sustainable product purchases.

Ribbon-Cutting Celebration 7:30 a.m., July 21
Community and business leaders will join Walmart associates at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday for a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony. Store associate Kendra Townsend will perform the national anthem and representatives from the Virginia Marine Resource Corporation will present the colors.

Community Organizations Benefit from Grand-Opening Grants:
Walmart is continuing its support of the community by giving $19,000 in grants from the Walmart Foundation to local organizations. The grant recipients include Accomac County Sheriffs Department, Eastern Shore Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Eastern Shore Rural Health, Lighthouse Ministries Food Bank, Olney Police Department, Southeastern Virginia Food Bank, Special Olympics and the YMCA.

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have committed $2 billion to U.S. hunger relief efforts through 2015. The Fighting Hunger Together campaign will also engage Walmart customers and associates in the fight against hunger. More information can be found at walmart.com/fightinghunger.

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