Wal-Mart plans a Rifle store | PostIndependent.com

Wal-Mart plans a Rifle store

Lynn Burton

In July, retail giant Wal-Mart announced plans to open a Rifle superstore on Interstate 70 next fall.

Ground has not been broken, but the plan for the 48-acre site calls for a 145,000-square-foot store that will include a grocery store and automotive center, plus 150,000 square feet for other stores, restaurants and businesses.

Rumors Wal-Mart was coming to Rifle had been circulating for more than a year, even before part time Snowmass Village residents David Glimcher and Larry Ruben announced their company, Rifle Retail Ventures, had purchased the Shaeffer property south of I-70 on Airport Road in January.

Wal-Mart didn’t confirm its intentions to build a store in Rifle until it filed its site plan in July.

The Rifle City Council supported Wal-Mart’s plans to open a store as a way to increase the city’s sales tax base. Consultants estimated the Wal-Mart store will generate more than $100,000 in sales taxes per year for Rifle, and more than 17,000 vehicle trips per day.

After Wal-Mart confirmed its plans to build in Rifle, the chamber of commerce launched a series of workshops to advise existing businesses on how to compete with the multi-billion dollar, multi-national retailer.

Many Rifle retailers were cautiously optimistic they might benefit from Wal-Mart’s presence, because the store is expected to attract shoppers to town from as far away as Meeker and Craig.

No other national retailers have yet announced plans to move to Wal-Mart’s shopping center.

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