By JACK WEATHERLY
The Colonial Highlands developer had been talking with Walmart about opening a 35,0000-square-foot store in the mixed-used development in Jackson.
But that apparently is not an option now.
The world’s largest retailer has decided to cut back drastically in store openings in the coming year.
That has forced the project, whose cost is about $250 million and is to include more than 600 living units, most of which will be free-standing traditional homes, along with attached homes and apartments for lease or sale to keep looking.
Hence, a for-sale sign has been posted on what had been the old Colonial Country Club’s driving range bordering Old Canton Road.
Jeff Speed, owner of Speed Commercial Real Estate, said that part of the property was put back on the market earlier this fall.
In general, Speed said, the fall and winter are typically a slow time for decision-making for many businesses.
But Walmart’s longer range planning calls for it to “open 130 U.S. stores this year, less than the 135 to 155 new stores it had forecast previously. (That compares to 230 last year. ) And then it will really drop off next year, when Walmart anticipates opening only 55 stores,” Fortune.com reported.
Speed said that he is “cautiously optimistic” about the plan for the 152-acre project.
He said that Colonial Jackson LLC has turned down several “dollar-type stores.”
Efforts to contact Bo Lockard, managing partner of Colonial Jackson, were unsuccessful.