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Sam’s Club construction underway

-Superstore scheduled to be open by the spring of next year

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Posted: Wednesday, August 7, 2013 1:00 am

Construction has begun for a new Sam’s Club store in Casa Grande.

The 136,000-square-foot, warehouse-styled club store is expected to open in the spring of 2014, said Mark Scott, Sam’s Club public relations spokesman.

“By this time next year, we will have our new Sam’s Club open and serving the people of the Casa Grande area,” Scott said.

The new store is expected to create about 175 new jobs, including management positions.

“We will likely begin the hiring process in late October or early November,” Scott said.

The store is being built on an 18-acre lot on Florence Boulevard just east of Interstate 10. Construction permits for the new store were finalized late last month.

Scott said the building is being constructed using environmentally friendly materials. When complete, the store will include several energy-efficient fixtures.

“For instance, daylight-harvesting skylights reduce the amount of energy required to light the store by up to 75 percent daily,” Scott said. “LED lighting throughout the club, including in the cooler and freezer box doors and jewelry counter, operates 70 percent more efficiently than traditional fluorescent lighting.”

The Casa Grande store will be the 16th Sam’s Club in Arizona. It is one of about two dozen expected to open nationwide next year, according to Scott.

The company also will open an additional store in Tucson in 2014, he said.

Jim Thompson, Casa Grande city manager, said the store will be a good addition to the community, providing jobs and additional shopping opportunities.

“On the fiscal impact side, the jobs the facility creates will be great,” Thompson said.

But he said the city is not certain it will see huge gains in sales tax revenue as local spending is expected to redistribute, not increase, once the new store opens.

“We expect some increase but we’re not certain until it happens,” he said.

But he said gains could come from area residents who now travel to Valley-area warehouse stores to shop. Once the new store opens, they might stay in town and shop at the new Sam’s Club, he said.

“We will see some new funds by those who used to leave town for warehouse shopping in other markets,” Thompson said.

So far, Sam’s Club is the only warehouse-style club store in the works for Casa Grande. But Thompson said as the economy improves and the population grows, other retailers might consider the local area.

“The market will determine when that might happen,” Thompson said

Sam’s Club and its parent company, Wal-Mart Stores Inc., employ more than 32,000 people statewide, Scott said.

In 2012, the company collected more than $405.4 million in taxes and fees for local and state governments statewide and contributed about $20 million to Arizona nonprofits, according to Scott.

The Casa Grande store will include a gas station, photo center, bakery, optical department and pharmacy. Goods sold at the store will range from fresh produce, meats and grocery items to electronics and home furnishings. The Casa Grande store will offer a selection of Arizona-made products.

The store also will offer its Click ’n’ Pull service, in which customers may submit orders online and pick them up at the store the following day.

“Casa Grande is a dynamic and outstanding community, and Sam’s Club is looking forward to building long-term relationships in the community,” Scott said.

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