Walmart on Nobel opens grocery store

After years of permit challenges Walmart expands its square footage to open grocery department

VISALIA – Ten years after Walmart’s Noble Avenue location was established, it expanded to include a grocery store.

Walmart’s new grocery store at 1819 E. Noble Ave in Visalia has expanded the footprint of the retailer from 133,206 square feet to 190,000 square feet and is finally open after adding 90 new parking spaces to accommodate food shoppers.

The new store is open after more than a decade of permit applications made by Walmart to the city that were challenged in court by a rival grocery chain, that seemed to drag on for years.

The grocery departments are not all complete with the retailer adding more departments over the next few weeks. The grocery store now has its own entrance.

Not proven was the suspicion that the rival was Save-Mart although often speaking for the litigants was Jim Watt, a former Save-Mart executive from Contra Costa County representing competing retailers in Visalia. The opponents called themselves Visalia Smart Growth Coalition who challenged an environmental impact report completed in April 2011. As well, the Save Mart is a few blocks away.

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