02/12/06 — New retail center to open at U.S. 70 west and N.C. 581

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New retail center to open at U.S. 70 west and N.C. 581

By Andrew Bell
Published in News on February 12, 2006 2:14 AM

Rumors of a Wal-Mart distribution center supposedly planned for the intersection of U.S. 70 West and N.C. 581 are untrue, the president of the county Economic Development Commission said.

The site is the future home of a retail center.

Joanna Thompson said she wanted to dispel the rumors that the distribution center was being built in Goldsboro, so she contacted officials with the state Department of Commerce to see if Wal-Mart had expressed interest in the site.

What she discovered was that a developer is planning the construction of a retail center at the intersection, she said. The retail center would have an anchor tenant with available space for other shops and out-parcels, Ms. Thompson said.

There is no definitive time for the start of construction, Ms. Thompson said. She said she could not release the name of the developer behind the project nor what stores would be located there.

A Wal-Mart spokesman told the News-Argus that the company had no plans for the Goldsboro vicinity but that it was interested in serving the Mount Olive area.

Mount Olive officials have said that Wal-Mart is considering building on a site northwest of the town.

Ms. Thompson said if a major distribution center was being planned, state Commerce Department officials would be the first to know.

"Any major retailer that is considering a location for a distribution center does it through the state Department of Commerce," Ms. Thompson said. "Wayne County has worked on several distribution center projects. They come through the state because they want to work with officials that can provide the best sites in the state and apply and qualify for the best grants."

No distribution center developer would consider a location for business without discussing the issue with the state, she said, because a business could be eligible to receive incentives to help it decide which location would be most economically practical. County officials also would be involved at an early stage in the process, she added.

As for the proposed retail center, Ms. Thompson said it will be a benefit to Goldsboro and Wayne County.

"I think this retail center will be good for that side of town," Ms. Thompson said.