McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

State House

June 12, 2014

Watonga to get Wal-Mart Express

WATONGA, Okla. — Watonga soon will be among the few communities in the region with a Wal-Mart Express, a city official said.

Thomas Ellison, building inspector and light and water foreman, said the store will sell groceries and some household goods, like cleaning supplies. He said there also will be a pharmacy, check cashing services and gas pumps.

The nearly 12,000-square-foot store will be located on Oklahoma 8, he said.

According to Ellison, Wal-Mart purchased land on which a former nursing home is located.

“They are supposed to be tearing the old building down at the end of this month sometime, and they’re hoping to be done by either mid- or late-November,” he said.

City officials have been working with Wal-Mart to make sure all of the water lines are run correctly.

“As far as the area they’re buying, it’s already zoned for what they have,” he said.

There already is a water line running to the property, Ellison said, but a new meter will be installed by the city. On the electrical side, Wal-Mart is purchasing a transformer.

A Wal-Mart official spoke to the Watonga City Council, Ellison said.

“What he explained to us, there’s not a lot of Wal-Mart Expresses coming in. They haven’t built a whole lot of them,” he said. “There (are) only a few of them around.”

Ellison said a few have been constructed in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas and New Mexico.

“It’s kind of a branch off of Wal-Mart, which is good for us because we needed another grocery store,” he said. “It’s actually nice having something come in, because we really don’t have much business-wise ever come in here.”

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