SPRINGFIELD–Walmart has scheduled to open its doors in the Marple Crossings Shopping Center by Oct. 1 of this year, pushed back from its originally proposed opening of early spring.
"I had a conversation with the owners [Paul Aschkenasy of Blank Aschkenasy Properties, LLC] of the center and asked for an expected date when Walmart would move in," said Marple Commissioner Dan Leefson at a work session meeting Monday night. "It could be sooner, but that's what they're planning for."
Walmart has already received work permits to start construction within the shopping center last year, but construction inside the retail building may start as early as this week, according to Leefson.
The retail chain store will be located directly in the center–the former location of Marshalls retail store, which has now been moved to the former site of Filene's Basement–of the shopping center when entering from State Road. Burlington Coat Factory will also move into the lower level of the Walmart.
Although many residents shared their about the mega retail/food store coming to the Marple Crossroads Shopping Center and have signed a petition against the new tenant moving in, the Marple Board of Commissioners are hopeful the store will generate more revenue and jobs to the town.
According to Leefson, leases from other prospective tenants wanting to move in have been coming "from left and right" after hearing about Walmart's move to Marple Crossroads.
Michael Molinaro also reassured that "everything would be taken care of" by the time Walmart moves in by October.
Walmart will occupy over 113,000 square-feet of space within the shopping center and $50 million in revenue is projected per year from the store.