Wal-Mart returning to Dougherty County? - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Wal-Mart returning to Dougherty County?

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August 2, 2005

Albany -- The Chamber of Commerce President says Wal-Mart is considering building a new store in east Albany, and the company is looking at different sites now.

When Wal-Mart left Dougherty County several years ago, many once loyal customers refused to go back. And the county lost millions of tax dollars. But now the retail super giant might come back to Albany.

Chamber of Commerce President Tim Martin said, "We understand that Wal-Mart is looking at our community."

Martin says Wal-Mart representatives are looking at various sites in east Albany, but haven't said for sure where they would locate, when the store would open, or if the rumors will ever become a reality.

But the talk is generating a lot of excitement with city leaders and east side Albany residents. "We stand ready, willing and able to work through that process and support that process. I know both the city and county are very eager to make sure that something like that comes to pass," Martin said.

"It will be a lot more convenient. It will save gas and time. I just think it would be wonderful," said East Albanian Mildred Spencer.

With traffic these days, it's no quick trip to the Wal-Mart in Lee County. If you don't have a car, you're out of luck. "The bus service doesn't go to Wal-Mart, so they can't get to Wal-Mart. So it would be a will benefit to the community over here if we could get more things on the east side," said East Albanian Jackie Tinsley.

The Wal-Mart would also draw customers from counties to the south and east, bringing millions of sales tax revenue back to Dougherty County. "Our community needs more opportunities for our consumers. Our 162,000 folks who live in the Metro Albany area deserve the finest," martin said.

We tried to call Wal-Mart today to find out more about their plan to add a store in east Albany, but they didn't return our calls.

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