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Thread: Two Wal-Mart supercenters in one town?

  1. #51
    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
    Nov 2002
    Ocean to the east, land to the west

    KMart, Walmart, etc.

    Kmart- there is a solid one near my home. I don't go for their stuff much but they definitely still have a niche (cheaper than Target, a little better than Walmart, plus can squeeze into smaller spaces than Walmart.)

    In terms of why 2 Walmarts near each other, I would echo the idea of market saturation. I don't think they care at all about anything related to land use, just the cost-benefit that the sales they take from themselves are not nearly as significant as keeping the competition out of the market. One may close eventually but only if they can keep ownership of the store to keep control of who rents it.

    I seem to live in a black hole of no-Walmarts, the only one I know of. The closest Walmart is at least 20 miles away. But there are 2 Home Depots within 2 miles of each other near me, and I am convinced it is to keep Lowes out...

  2. #52
    Sep 2006
    California Huzzah!
    Puyallup, Washington only 33,000 and its unincorporated community of South Hill 31,000, Have 2 Walmart Supercenters 5 miles apart on one of the worst traffic corridors in the state.

  3. #53
    Cyburbian amyk's avatar
    Apr 2007
    Los Anchorage
    In 2005, Prescott, AZ (pop. ~40,000) had 2 Wal*Mart Supercenters less than 5 miles apart, a Target, and a Costco. The tri-city area also includes Prescott Valley, to the east, and Chino Valley to the north. The tri-city area is roughly around 90,000-100,000 people. My understanding is that since then, 2 more supercenters were planned, one in PV and one further north to serve CV.

    I don't know if both of them were approved and built, but at the time all of this was being discussed, a member of the county Public Works Department said he had read a "study" done by Wal*Mart, concluding that if a supercenter were built every six miles throughout the country, Wal*Mart would still make a profit.

    In Anchorage (pop. ~280,000), we have two existing Wal*Mart stores, and there is one in Eagle River, about 10 miles north (ER is technically within Anchorage's municipal boundary, so their population is included in Anchorage's overall population count). We also have 4 Fred Meyer's stores (+1 in Eagle River) and 2 Costco's. K-Mart closed a few years ago and was converted into a Sportsman's Warehouse. We have our first Target store opening in October, with a second planned for 2009. We will also be getting 2 more Wal*Mart Supercenter's in the next few years.

  4. #54
    Cyburbian transguy's avatar
    Jan 2006

    A few thoughts on market saturation…

    It often seems like two (or more) Wal-Marts in close proximity are trying to reach different markets. I have lived in many places where there was a Wal-Mart a few miles one way, and another a few miles the other way. However, there was often a drastic difference in the types of people shopping at each store. Store A may be located in a working class neighborhood and Store B located in a more affluent area. It seems reasonable that Wal-Mart would be putting in more than one store to appeal to various groups and ensure that they are capturing as much of the market as they can. Seems like a logical explanation to me.

  5. #55
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
    Apr 2004
    Tri-Cities, Washington
    Blog entries
    We're getting two mighty close to our town and all within a 10 mile drive.
    I feel this will hamper my abilities to eventually get small retail into our town and I feel that if we do people will not care too much as many a Wal Mart shopper live here.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone

  6. #56
    I've never been out west, but from what I understand towns are clearly separated, here in eastern MA you can drive into another city and not even realize - so with that said, even though we have 3 Wal-Marts in 3 different cities/towns, they're all within about 15 minutes from my house. There are also 3 Targets within 15 minutes, but again, in different cities/towns. I'm going to agree that the reason they place them so close together is market saturation. A Target is not likely to move in because they can't compete with two Wal-Mart's, and the money Wal-Mart may lose from having two locations is nothing compared to the money they might lose having one thriving location and competing with Target.

    On the other hand, I can't even count how many Lowe's and Home Depots we have, within 10 minutes from here and that are all placed practically across from each other.

    On the subject of wages mentioned earlier, Wal-Mart pays exactly the same (here) as any other major retailer - $8/hr (minimum wage) to start. I think the difference is that Target seems to have a clear management track aimed at moving people to the next level, whereas Wal-Mart tends to keep people in the same part time positions.

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