Walmart gearing up to move into old Factoria Mervyns space

The space in the Factoria Mall that has been closed to the public since Mervyns left six years ago will open again, Oct. 17, with a new retailer. Walmart.

The new 76,000 square-foot discount store will be the second Walmart to open in Bellevue this year, and it will have a complementary but different focus to the Walmart Neighborhood Market that opened in the Kelsey Creek Shopping Center June 29.

Bellevue's Kelsey Creek Walmart highlights, "a broad assortment of groceries and a pharmacy," while the Factoria store highlights "general merchandise, apparel electronics and more - from TVs, mops and brooms to small furniture," says Rachel Wall, a senior manager of communication affairs for Walmart. The new Factoria Walmart will, however, also cary a smaller selection of food.

Both required hiring a significant number of new employees - from check stand ringers to managers. So far, 125 positions have been filled for the Factoria store, and the hiring will continue into the holiday season. There are about 110 employees at the Kelsey Creek store, in comparison. The average wage for full-time hourly associates is $13.

Employees have already been working for about eight months to get the Factoria site ready for grand opening. About 50 temporary construction workers spent the first six on structural upgrades, including repainting the lot and bringing the electrical and interior up to city code, Walmart employees spent the second six setting up the store.

The grand opening is slated for 7:30 a.m. Oct. 17, and planned highlights include a speech by a store manager, a $65,000 grant that Walmart will give to the Puget Sound Blood Center, giveaways and interaction between vendors and customers.


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