According to City Manager James Stephens, while the deal has not been finalized, it now rests on approval of the annexation agreement and building permits.
“The land deal has not closed yet,” he said. “If they [the Planning Commission] approve the concept plan, then it will be placed on the city agenda.”
The land in question rests on the southbound side of Highway 27, almost directly across from the current Wal-Mart location at 109 Davis Road.
Of the 37 acres, the Wal-Mart Super Center would sit on just over 21 acres, with nine acres reserved for future Wal-Mart expansion, Stephens said. The size of the building in the current concept plan is 155,017 square feet.
The land would also provide room for five additional outlets that could be used for restaurants.
If approved by the Planning Commission, the City Commission would have two readings of the annexation agreement, first on Feb. 14 and then again on March 14, making the deal official. A public hearing will also be held.
Construction could begin as early as April, Stephens said, and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. officials have slated August 2006 as an expected completion date.
Stephens said he is excited about the prospect of the impact a Wal-Mart Super Center could have on Cedartown.
“It’s a good day for Cedartown,” he said. “Once the construction is through we should see a big boost in sales tax revenue.”
Rumors of a Super Wal-Mart coming to Polk County have run rampant for months, though, no one seemed sure of the proposed location.
Sites between Cedartown and Rockmart on Highway 278 had been discussed, but Stephens said he believes Wal-Mart executives decided on the Highway 27 site because of higher traffic flow.
Cedartown’s liquor referendum also played a part in the decision.
“It has had a very favorable impact on the way [commercial] developers look at Cedartown,” he said.
According to current Cedartown Wal-Mart Manager Hope Radford a Super Wal-Mart employs approximately 430 people, much more than the employee base at the current Wal-Mart.
“The average here is 130 to 140 employees,” he said.
In addition to the difference in the number of employees, Wal-Mart Super Center features a full line of groceries, a pharmacy and often include Wal-Mart Specialty Shops such as a Vision Center, Tire & Lube Express and One-Hour Photo Processing, according to www.walmartstores.com.
Wal-Mart has around 3,660 stores in the United States and more than 1,500 overseas. It has annual sales of $256 billion, making it the world’s largest retailer.