CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Walmart looks to add a fourth store in Kanawha County, but their first choice as a location is a non-starter with the Kanawha County Commission.

The Arkansas-based retailer already has stores in Cross Lanes, Southridge, and Quincy and is considering a fourth site which would serve customers in northern Kanawha County. The county planning commission was recently approached with a $2 million offer for property within the boundaries of Coonskin Park to build a 150,000 square foot store. The company said it would invest another $10-$15 million and create 300 jobs with the store.

“That is not going to happen, not on my watch,” Kanawha County Commission President Kent Carper said Wednesday. “The people here don’t want that. I can’t imagine people of Kanawha County would support that idea.”

Carper said the company basically wants to build and use the property which is now the Coonskin golf course. He said not only would it wreck the landscape of the park, but could also jeopardize the future of the West Virginia Air Guard’s 130th Airlift Wing. A deal is already in the works to build a bridge over the Elk River and move the present park entrance in an effort to meet federal recommendations for securing the air base.

“This would delay building the bridge across the river,” said Carper. “Yes, Walmart might even agree to pay for the bridge, but it would take years to put this through.”

Carper said he and fellow commissioners are encouraged anytime a developer with private money shows and interest in locating a retail establishment in the county, but said this isn’t the right fit. The county will be working with Walmart to find other potentially suitable locations for another super store.┬áCarper said northern Kanawha County had several locations which would meet the infrastructure needs for the store.

“We hope this doesn’t dissuade them from this area because of our stance on this,” Carper said. “But the people of this county don’t want their park turned into a shopping mall.”

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  • Vicki

    The last thing we need is another Walmart.

  • Larry

    I can't imagine they need another store in Kanawha Co, I would think there are better locations to put one.

  • ThatGuyOverThere

    Personally, I hope to never see the inside of another walmart in my entire life. And i hope to never see another open in WV...or anywhere for that matter. Walmart is a junk store that essentially killed small town USA mom and pop stores.

  • Walsingham

    They should look at the first site that was prepared for the Power ball park, across the interstate.

  • WV alum

    100% Correct!!!

  • blugldmn

    The USAF does not want to support the base to begin with.

    It is not cost defective to maintain 5 to 8 planes in this manner.

    They have been trying to leave for years but intervention from politicians have prevented it.

    How much money will be wasted trying to keep them when all know in the end they will leave.

    Eventually the massive debt incurred by the federal government will dictate the closure of many units.

    Here you have a private business willing to make capital improvements and contribute to the economy instead of leeching on it.

    This isn't a knock on the WVANG people it's just the economics of the situation.