Walmart plans third super center in Rock Hill

adouglas@heraldonline.comNovember 2, 2013 

A Walmart is planned for the intersection at Mount Holly Road and Saluda Street. It would be the company’s third super center in Rock Hill, in addition to stores on Dave Lyle Boulevard at the Rock Hill Galleria and at S.C. 161 near Newport.

DAN O’MARA — domara@heraldonline.com

Walmart plans to build a third “super center” in Rock Hill, at the corner of Saluda Street and Mount Holly Road.

The company says the new store will bring 300 new jobs – most of which will be full time.

A company representative on Friday declined to specify the company’s investment in the new store.

Walmart’s interest in bringing another super center and gas station to Rock Hill is “super news,” City Manager David Vehaun said.

“It’s a real win for the neighbors,” he said.

Vehaun expects that Walmart’s presence will be a catalyst to more commercial development around the new store, he said, given the example of shops and restaurants springing up around the Walmart on S.C. 161 near Newport.

Walmart already has Rock Hill stores on Dave Lyle Boulevard at the Rock Hill Galleria and at S.C. 161.

Earlier this year, the company announced it will build one of its “neighborhood market” stores at the corner of Celanese and Ebinport roads.

This past summer, the company opened a Sam’s Club near its Dave Lyle Boulevard super center.

Walmart’s arrival to the Saluda Street area is one example that recent city- and county-funded public improvements are paying off, Vehaun said.

York County’s “Pennies for Progress” program has paid for the widening of Albright Road, which is one part of the intersection at the site of the planned Walmart.

The city recently invested in building “gateway markers” at the future Walmart intersection, which designate one entrance into Rock Hill.

Some road work and beautification projects also have taken place along Saluda Street in recent years.

Newly elected Rock Hill City Councilwoman Ann Williamson-Morrison welcomed the Walmart news on Friday.

She will be sworn in as the Ward 5 representative in January. She’s replacing longtime City Councilman Osbey Roddey from Ward 5, who is retiring next year after 24 years in office.

The Saluda Street/Albright Road Walmart would be part of Rock Hill’s Ward 5.

Bringing the company’s low prices for clothing, groceries and other items to Ward 5, Williamson-Morrison said, is good news for residents.

For years, the area’s residents have said the Saluda Street area needs a large grocery store or place to shop, she said.

She hopes Walmart’s super center will attract “upscale” restaurants, she said, to give Ward 5 more eating options.

Rock Hill Mayor Doug Echols released a written statement late Friday afternoon about the new Walmart store, saying “We had these kinds of results in mind when we began the streetscape improvements to the Saluda corridor. ... This announcement comes at an appropriate time and signifies the dedication that Mr. Roddey has shown for the people of Rock Hill. He has worked hard to improve infrastructure and opportunity for all our citizens and this significant commercial development is a great feather in his cap as his tenure on council comes to an end.”

A timeline for the store’s construction or opening has not been announced, but a company representative said on Friday that it normally takes up to one year to finish construction of a Walmart super center.

Construction will begin after city permitting processes are finished.

The new Walmart is expected to be about 180,000 square feet.

Anna Douglas •  803-329-4068

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