Wal-Mart to build a store in Atascadero

March 13, 2015

wal-martWal-Mart announced Thursday that it will move forward with plans to build an 118,000 square-foot shopping center in northern Atascadero.

After seven years of contentious debate, the project was approved by the Atascadero City Council in 2012. However, a group of citizens filed a lawsuit over the approval, which failed last summer.

Then corporate Wal-Mart began questioning whether or not to open multiple already approved stores including the proposed Del Rio Road and El Camino Real project.

Next, Wal-Mart will have to comply with permitting requirements before determining a construction timeline.

The Atascadero Wal-Mart will employ about 250 people and will include a grocery section, an outdoor garden center and a full-service pharmacy.

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If the consumers only purchased what they needed there would not be a business model for WalMart. Small town ways, the simple life, is what supported rural Atascadero and that has been gone for decades. We now have half million dollar starter homes and eco travel to the smart shopper big box stores. A good topic for discussion on your next wine tasting tour.

What impact has WM had on Paso Robles and Arroyo Grande?

Atascadero has other issues — many other issues.

It is so much easier to just blame the big bad Walmart, city official will never accept the blame for anything they have done, it is easier for them to just get people to believe Walmart is the reason for all their problems. It keeps the officials in their jobs without actually taking any responsibility for the mess they have created and caused.

Seven years – ridiculous! I have no idea why Wal-Mart felt compelled to fight this long for a store that might not be needed. The city should never have dragged on this long – but then again, that’s typical A-town. There a Wal-Mart in Arroy Grande and Paso and should be one in San Luis Obispo although I’m sure the political nightmare that is SLO may not be worth the effort. What this region really needs is a Sams Club. Oops, sorry, that makes too much sense.

Given all the regulations, applications, committees, reviews, re-reviews, re-re-reviews every business as to go through in California, counties and cities, seven years is not that long. One difference is Walmart has the financial ability to follow though, many up businesses do not and that is why they give up on California and go to other states that are more business friendly.

But hey if you will need public assistance of any kind, California, counties and cities are welcoming you with open arms. The taxpayers can always be squeezed for more money.

Atascadero is a ghost town now, empty stores, whole empty shopping centers! Thanks city council and mayor for the final nail in the coffin for business. What a bunch of hayseed ignoramuses. You got your city salaries and pensions locked in now and the residents can either shop in Walmart or drive to another city for variety because the shops in town won’t be open. Atascadero looks worse than any town I have visited other than Calico CA. or Oatman Arizona, both ghost towns.

You are so right smiley. Look what Walmart has done to Arroyo Grande and Paso Robles. Just look at the effect on property values! It’s just the same thing as oil rigs in the ocean. If you have any doubt what oil rigs would do to our property values, just look at Santa Barbara. Nuf said. I want to visit the town you live in smiley.

Real Estate in Santa Barbara is as high as it has always been, oil rigs?? get real. Why do you think so many Santa Barbara area workers live in Lompoc, Buellton, and surrounding areas?, no oil rigs? Ha….

Don’t take the bait kayak.

See JMO’s comment to agag1 below. He admits having difficulty being serious.

I believe comment from Rich in MB, way done the line, confirms my hunch.

Once again, a “sarcasm” font would be helpful for some…

Atascaderos low income citizens will be glad.. Should be some good shoppers of Walmart photos coming from this location.

Good luck Atascadero.

Hope Wal Mart does better by you on traffic issues than they did AG.

What are the traffic issues with Walmart in AG? I have a harder time parking at TJ’s than Walmart. I sure wish they would unionize TJ’s so I wouldn’t feel as guilty when I shop there. But at least TJ’s is owned by a European family. Nothing boils my blood like seeing an American family get rich like the Waltons. It’s so disgusting how the Waltons make so much money selling things made in China. Why can’t U.S. companies be more like Apple?

Two words: Brisco underpass

Ok. I will get serious for a second (it will be difficult). The Brisco underpass is a little convoluted, I will admit. But I have never spent more than 2 minutes at that intersection. Usually I sail right through. What would you want Walmart to do? And why did they approve an In and Out after Walmart? Have you seen the vehicle traffic for In and Out? It has to be as much as Walmart during the peak hours (vehicles per hour, not amount of parked vehicles for all you non-civil engineers). And seriously, TJ’s has a significant traffic demand and rightly so. TJ’s came in after Walmart also.

So, two traffic intensive businesses came in AFTER Walmart and the Brisco underpass is still not overloaded. Please explain what you expected from Walmart with regards to the Brisco underpass.

The Brisco/ 101 area has a LOS (level of service) that is legally unacceptable. All intersections are required to operate at level C or above. Because of the Brisco underpass, several nearby intersections operate with failing LOS.

Former elected officials approved the two centers occupied by Wal Mart and TJ’s WITHOUT requiring the developer to make the necessary improvements to Brisco which would sufficiently deal with all traffic coming to the area once the centers were filled.

Each new tenant that comes to the center is not responsible for what should have been done long ago. The newer businesses are merely filling in the previously approved center. Changes to Brisco should have been part of the deal for approval of the entire project years ago.

Now, residents of AG are having to foot the bill, just as residents of Atascadero will.

Another present from Ferrara and Adams……

Actually, Ferrara initially got involved in AG politics because of the Wal Mart center being approved without making the developer responsible for dealing with Brisco.

Where Tony went wrong (well, one of the $$$$$ things Tony did wrong) was fight, argue, and squander away millions of AG taxpayer $$$$ on his pet proposal for fixing the mess, which hopefully died its last death at the council meeting on Tues 3/10.

Longtime AG councilman Jim Guthrie now wants to be seen as a problem solver, and at the 3/10 meeting called for closing the on /off ramps at Brisco. Of course, the city already knew this option worked like a dream, since in 2007 the ramps were closed for a two week trial period and traffic sailed thru smoothly.

But closing the ramps was NOT Ferrara’s dream- – -oh no!

Tony’s preferred option, at an estimated cost of an addition $9+ MILLION, is obviously more extensive, aka costly. Remember, Tony often referred to this as HIS town, so what Tony wanted, Tony was bound and determined to get. To he// with the cost, damn it–this was going to get done HIS way! Apparently Mrs McClish (of the Adams /McClish tea party) is still on team Tony.

She did everything she could but perform CPR on Tony’s dream plan, but now even Guthrie and KB bailed…they have a 2016 election to think about.

It has never been in question as to if Ms. McClish is on team Ferrara, no one thinks she is not. She is also not the only person at the city that is. She will never admit to any wrong doing in “tea gate”, it would reduce her position in her upcoming lawsuit and reduce her payout. Everyone knows it is only a matter of time before she files her suit and most are just letting her spin her wheels. She must know she has no ones respect and everything she does is closely watched. Before she could do anything she wanted, regardless of the law, and Ferrara/Adams would back her up. At least now she is being watch and for now the time of her thinking she can do wrong is over.

Ok. Let’s let the public decide. Level C Definition: “Intermittently vehicles may wait through one or more signal indication, occasional backups may develop, traffic flow still stable and acceptable,” Level D Definition: “Delays at intersections may become extensive, but enough cycles with lower demand occur to permit periodic clearance, preventing excessive backups. LOS D has historically been regarded as a desirable design objective in urban areas.”

We both know this intersection has been extensively studied by Caltrans, including closing the intersection to study the traffic flow. But help us out agag, what legal statute says “All intersections are required to operate at level C and above.” And what studies (not just your or my opinion) showed what level the Brisco underpass is. Finally, what are the other intersections that the study showed that failed the LOS requirements that studies showed was caused by the Brisco underpass? This information would go a long ways in helping the world of public opinion decide.

Also, there may very well be an issue with the Brisco underpass that I haven’t seen. Anyone who lives in the area have any comments?

The LOS service doesn’t get to be determined by the public.

I am not a traffic expert but have listened to almost all of the major discussions with regards to this area for more than a decade. Copies of all studies are available at the city.

The city is legally required to bring their traffic issues into compliance, which is why it makes it so difficult to understand when communities DO NOT make developers responsible for issues these big projects create.

If AG could get away with ignoring Brisco and doing nothing, they would. This is not a Caltrans problem, the freeway functions as it should, this is ALL AG.

Brisco was not a problem before the big centers came to this side of the freeway. Now it is the AG taxpayers’ problem.

IMO, Atascadero will find itself in the same position.

I have to go now, but when I check later could you fill in your answer a little? Did you read all (or any) of the studies that are available at the city? Are the studies available on-line? When you say “The city is legally required to bring their traffic issues into compliance…” what law are you talking about? It’s obvious that you avoided my first questions and am getting nervous that someone is calling you out when you make unsubstantiated (so far) statements so I am giving you a second chance to shine (or not).

I don’t really care one way or the other on the Walmart issue. I shop there when I want to. I shop at TJ’s often also. I shop at Albertsons (or whatever its new name is). I like having the option to shop at different places. If I don’t like a store (have a bad experience, prices too high, whatever) I simply don’t shop there anymore. Same with restaurants we patronize. Sure I wish I lived in a town where you had individual stores for meat, vegetables, hardware, etc. (like some towns in Ireland) but I don’t want to operate such a store so why should I expect someone else to?

Anyone who thinks Brisco isn’t a cluster is a fool!

Yeah, so glad a lot of the food at TJ’s comes from Mexico. Walmart is so evil……

JMO…the Walmart haters won’t be smart enough to see what’s you have done….but it’s classic funny.

The world will not end with Walmart folks.

It you don’t like them…don’t shop there it is called freedom.

No, the world will not end with Wal Mart, but the residents of Atascadero will get stuck paying the bill for all the traffic issues it will create, and they have their elected officials to thank for not holding Wal Mart responsible for the mess.

Sorry Agag 1, but the elected leaders of Atascadero duly elected by the people gave approval for this WalMart, so you have the elected leaders to blame. Not Walmart.

I can’t wait to drive over from Morro Bay on Hwy 41 to spend a little money in Atascadero besides Tacos de Mexico.

Just as in AG, elected officials should have made WalMart, (or any developer) pay for the traffic issues created by their projects. The leaders have failed the citizens, WalMart just happens to be the winner in both cases.

Geez, Disneyland was built in one year, right?

It’s magic!