Madrid: Walmart Brings 'Employment Opportunities' to La Mesa (Video)

The new Neighborhood Market, located at 8820 Grossmont Blvd. and housed in the former Circuit City building, officially opened to the public on Wednesday morning.

La Mesa's latest grocery store, the new Walmart Neighborhood Market, opened to the public on Wednesday, in an early morning ribbon-cutting ceremony. Located at 8820 Grossmont Blvd., and housed in the former Circuit City building, the store will provide La Mesa residents another option to shop for groceries fresh produce.

“The new Walmart Neighborhood Market will be another valued member of our business community, and many of our residents are looking forward to its opening and the employment opportunities it brings to La Mesa,” said La Mesa Mayor Art Madrid. “Walmart has been a good corporate citizen to many of our civic and nonprofit organizations, and I'm confident that this new store will continue to be a good community partner.”

The store will provide full- and part-time jobs to roughly 65 people, many of whom are La Mesans. The store's manager, Todd Raley, is an east county native and Santee resident.

He has been with the company since 1994, and worked his way up into a managerial position in the new store.

"I've been with the company for 18 years now, starting as a temporary associate," said Raley. "I really appreciate Walmart – they recognize merit and how hard you work, which is awesome, and it's an honor to help open up the first Neighborhood Market in San Diego."

The Neighborhood Market format has been a part of the Walmart brand since about 1998, according to spokesperson Delia Garcia.

"We're excited to open the first store here. You'll see that it's about a quarter to a third of the size of a traditional SuperCenter, and it's really designed for convenient grocery shopping," said Garcia.

The 39,000-square-foot La Mesa store features a self-serve deli with pre-packaged foods, a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, as well as meats, cheeses and prepared foods. In addition to fresh produce, the store carries a full line of groceries, including frozen foods, meat and dairy products, gluten-free and organic items. Customers can also find cakes and pastries in the bakery section. The La Mesa Walmart Neighborhood Market will be open from 6 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week.

In addition, the store features a pharmacy, customer service and check cashing center, and paper goods, pet products, hardware items and a Celebration Station, where customers can buy gift wrap and gift bags, greeting cards and party supplies.

Many local community groups are also benefiting from the store's opening. As part of the grand-opening celebration, $4,000 in grants from Walmart and the Walmart Foundation will be presented to the La Mesa Adult Enrichment Center, Boys to Men Mentoring Network, Catholic Charities and College Preparatory Middle School.

In addition, a $15,000 grant will be presented to SAY San Diego. Funds will be available throughout the year for local organizations that serve the community. Interested groups can visit foundation.walmart.com for more information

With the corporate giant opening its doors next to another La Mesa grocery store, Ralphs, many wonder if there would be pushback from the community. But Raley, a graduate of Granite Hills High school in El Cajon and San Diego State University, said he and his team can only provide the best quality they can to customers.

"We're focused on just providing the everyday low price to the customers," he said.

Eric Yates October 17, 2012 at 09:48 PM
Do you think Walmart is a good addition to Grossmont? Will it create pricing competition for groceries or ultimately drive out other places to get groceries?
Deena While October 17, 2012 at 10:13 PM
I'm not a fan of WalMart...and certainly not two Walmarts in one town. Worse thing Parkway Plaza could have done was have a WalMart there....how do you sell $80 jeans when there are $15 jeans around the corner...and don't get me started on all the abandoned shopping carts. Nope, WalMart is bad news. It will drive other businesses out of La Mesa. WalMart is not a good neighbor. Shop Ralphs! They have been good for our community for a long time!
Rachel October 17, 2012 at 10:31 PM
Why would I want to shop Ralphs when I can get groceries for less at Target or Walmart? I need the savings to pay for my gas. One good thing about the high gas prices is that it is a sign of a good economy. At least according to Mr. Obama. I guess we need a recession for affordable gas. Is has nothing to do with our energy policies. Until then I'm saving at the grocery store to pay at the pump!
Chris Glenn October 18, 2012 at 01:02 PM
There's no question about this new store just feet from a major competitor, pulling business away. Given the narrow margin for profits in this retail sector, Ralphs will be forced to close, as they did in El Cajon.
Deena While October 18, 2012 at 01:43 PM
Yep, and what the public doesn't see, yet, is the more we allow a monoply to happen, the less choice we have in the future. Goodbye specialty shops where people actually know what they are selling and can answer questions. When I had my children's book store in the village, people came in for the fun atmosphere, to see the books, the train and the animals, but then went to WalMart for a 'better deal'. That's what WalMart does to potentially every store in town. Sure they entice you with low prices, but it hurts local business. And now La Mesa has TWO!
Chris S. October 18, 2012 at 05:34 PM
I think it's funny that in the picture above showing "Fresh Produce", everything is in a bag or container. From my (intentional) limited experiences at Walmart, they sell mostly processed food which I try to avoid. I'd rather not shop at a place that treats female employees and those trying to form a union, poorly. I don't see how the Ralph's will stay in business. That shopping center is always mostly empty. So the unemployed people hired by Walmart will be negated by the Ralph's employees that get laid off. It's too bad Bed Bath & Beyond didn't move in where Linens and Things used to be. I'll stick to Sprouts, Vons, Ralphs and the farmer's market.
Chris S. October 18, 2012 at 05:39 PM
Well, according to Art Madrid, they gave organizations in the city money. I agree, that the charm is dying. I moved here because La Mesa had a downtown, but it seems like many places can't afford to have a business there. I still can't believe a 7-11 is going in at that little shopping area on La Mesa Blvd. and Jackson, that already had major parking issues.
Deena While October 18, 2012 at 05:56 PM
Cash Mob! Every Thursday at Ralphs! Spend at least $20 to show our support!
Komfort October 18, 2012 at 06:02 PM
LOS ANGELES—Ralphs Grocery Co. will pay more than $1 million to settle allegations that it overcharged Los Angeles customers for some items. A judge approved the settlement on Thursday. Los Angeles county and city prosecutors charged that Ralphs stores failed to deduct the weight of packaging on some prepackaged and weighed food products three years ago. They claimed that effectively short-weighted the item. Under the settlement, Ralphs did not acknowledge liability but agreed to pay about $1.1 million in fines and restitution. In a statement, the company says there's nothing misleading or unfair in its pricing and any "inadvertent discrepancies" were corrected immediately. http://www.dailybulletin.com/california/ci_21652204/ralphs-stores-pay-1m-settle-overcharging-claim
Deena While October 18, 2012 at 06:05 PM
Accidents happen, discrepancies were corrected immediately. Can you find any lawsuits with WalMart?
Komfort October 18, 2012 at 06:16 PM
Probably. :-)
Kevin George October 18, 2012 at 06:48 PM
If there are enough people who would "rather not shop at a place that treats female employees and those trying to form a union, poorly." Ralphs will stay in business. If BBB thought it could have made money at the Linen & Things location they would have opened there. There is only ONE reason Linen& Things is not there anymore: It was not profitable. What seems to be lost here is that the sole purpose of a business is to make money. It is not the purpose of a business to provide jobs or serve the public.It is to make money, jobs and and providing for the public are ancillary benefits.
David Secor October 18, 2012 at 09:33 PM
Walmart (largest employer) and the Walton family (richest family) are the ultimate example of naked capitalism, the dream world for Ayn Randers. It and they are classic free enterprise predators. They devour uncounted small businesses, and larger but not large enough businesses, destroy neighborhoods in ways that can't be measured in dollars and thus not a concern for soulless people like Rand, for whom money, profit are the lone measures of what is "good" in life. In time we will look around and see, every half-mile, a mega-store with empty lots or shuttered small businesses between. When "the lowest price" is all that matters, we eventually lose all that makes variety "the spice of life." It's contagious, too, and can be transmitted to humans. Notice the folks shopping in Walmart (including me) vs those shopping in a local small business (including me). They are somehow different people. It seems they (me) have less, or more, "spice" in them. Remind your mayor: When a La Mesan spends $1 in a big box store, 60 cents remains in the community. When a La Mesan spends $1 in a local small business, almost 90 cents stays in the community. That's if the mayor believes money remaining in the La Mesa community is a worthwhile goal. I shop Walmart, but try to not notice that I am a co-conspirator in the destruction and China-fication of the U.S. economy. On the "bright side" the Walton family will be the last American family to go.
BrookeElaine October 29, 2012 at 10:39 PM
Also Walmart is a distraction to those who should be looking for a career, not a job. The majority of employees at Walmart are middle-aged. Walmart will keep them employed there as long as possible, bribing them with their 10% discounts and descent pay. But sooner or later every employee will be standing there, probably still at the cashier's desk asking themselves what they have done with their lives. Time to get a real career! There are so many resources to use like phone apps or online job search sites like granted.com. According to www.forbes.com, 70% of employees hate their jobs. Don't let Walmart turn you into one of these. Walmart is not about the people anymore, its about the money.
Juan A Reynoso January 25, 2013 at 10:57 PM
This is actually a move because of Roger Talman and his original ownership of "Grossmont Pharmacy" and it's original contract. No pharmacy is allowed to be opened on CBRE property in that area so after the thriving of the Camino Canada Walmart the stockholders decided to stick Fabiola into the new store as a chance move to defeat Target and to finally get some decent profits. Stick in Sharp HMO with the pharmacy ran at one time by Jim and you end up with a lot of history of Grossmont Hill being put to the test.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »