Wal-Mart is making a big push into the California grocery market with its… (Donna McWilliam / Associated…)
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has announced plans to open a Neighborhood Market grocery store in Altadena, part of a concerted push by the world's largest retailer into the competitive California supermarket business.
The 28,000-square-foot store will be located at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Figueroa Drive in a space once occupied by a thrift store, the company said Thursday.
“We think Wal-Mart can be part of the solution in the Altadena community for residents who want more affordable options close to home," said Steven Restivo, Wal-Mart's senior director for community affairs. "We look forward to creating a new option for healthy food in the community."
Wal-Mart has announced plans for 18 smaller-format grocery stores in California, including two in Orange County, another in Ventura County and one in San Diego.
A forthcoming Neighborhood Market in downtown L.A.'s Chinatown area has rallied opposition from the City Council, community activists and labor groups, who have long accused the company of providing poor wages and benefits to employees while driving out mom-and-pop businesses. A planned march through Chinatown on June 30 is expected to draw up to 10,000 supporters, according to advocacy group Making Change at Wal-Mart.
Restivo said there are no signs that the Panorama City store, which will employ about 60 workers, will inspire the same kind of rallies and opposition faced by the Chinatown location.
Construction is starting soon, Restivo said, and the store should be open in 2013.
Wal-Mart to pay $2-million state penalty
Wal-Mart making big push into Southern California grocery market
L.A. council proposal could keep Wal-Mart grocery out of Chinatown