The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

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April 24, 2013

Wal-Mart to build grocery store on former car lot

JOPLIN, Mo. — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has filed plans with the city of Joplin to construct a Neighborhood Market grocery store at 1600 E. Seventh St., the site of Crossroads Chevrolet — formerly R&S Chevrolet.

The plans for the store have been filed with the city, according to Steve Cope, city building inspector. Efforts by the Globe to obtain comment from Wal-Mart about the project have been unsuccessful.

A typical Neighborhood Market has about 42,000 square feet of floor space, making it about one-fourth the size of a Wal-Mart Supercenter. Each store employs about 80 to 90 people. The stores, which are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, are designed to offer quick access to low-cost groceries, prescriptions and household products.

Wal-Mart operates two general merchandise Supercenters in Joplin and one in Webb City.

In Springfield, Wal-Mart operates five Supercenters and four Neighborhood Markets.

The Joplin store will take up the entire block except for the northeast corner of the property where a Raco Car Wash exists.

Rick Nixon, the owner of Nixon’s Garage and Towing Service on the St. Louis Avenue side of the property, said Wal-Mart will take possession of the building he leases at a closing on July 3.

He said Wal-Mart has not closed on the Crossroads property, which is owned by a Joplin family.

“But, it’s coming quickly,” he said. “They moved the deadline on us to July 3.”

Nixon has purchased the former Joplin Freightliner building at 711 S. Patterson Ave. to preserve his business and the jobs of five full-time employees. Nixon said the Crossroads body shop was shut down on Wednesday.

“We’re restoring the Joplin Freightliner building, including a new roof, and then we’ll move in,” he said. “The new deadline will make that difficult.”

Nixon said he had purchased five lots on the west side of his business on St. Louis Avenue with the prospect of building a new shop there. He instead chose to purchase the Joplin Freightliner building. The five lots are now on the market.

Declined

JOHN ALBURTY, owner of the Raco Car Wash, said in a recent interview that he was approached about his property several months ago, but he declined to sell. The potential buyer was not identified at the time.

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