EL CAJON, Calif. - Wal-Mart announced Monday it plans to open a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market on Second Street in El Cajon.
The store, slated to open in the first half of next year, will fill a 40,000-square-foot retail space north of E. Main Street that has been vacant for three years.
"Families often struggle to maximize their time and save money when shopping for basic necessities and fresh food," El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells said. "This store will help our residents accomplish both."
The store will create 65 jobs, according to Wal-Mart.
Wal-Mart currently operates two other Neighborhood Markets in San Diego County. El Cajon is host to one of the chain's superstores, at Westfield Parkway Plaza.
Wal-Mart spokeswoman Rachel Wall issued this statement:
"We are excited to bring our convenient grocery store to our customers in El Cajon. We believe this store will benefit the community, closer to where our customers live and work and helping fill a retail space that has sat empty. As we've seen throughout the state, our stores bring additional commercial activity to shopping centers and help drive customers to nearby small businesses. We appreciate the welcome we have received from the City and the community, and we look forward to serving residents with another option for fresh, healthy, affordable food."
With the news of Wal-Mart's plans, the president of the Neighborhood Market Association and owners of a Sav-A-Lot located blocks from where Wal-Mart's market will be told 10News the giant chain will hurt local small businesses.
Other El Cajon business owners said they could be forced to close their doors if the new Wal-Mart market moves in.