The store’s pharmacy will remain open through Sept. 13, the company said. Customers will get help in transferring their prescriptions to other pharmacies, it added.
Reacting to the news on Wednesday, a St. Paul city spokesperson said, "We recognize that the character of the Snelling-Midway area will be changing with the significant investments in rail and bus rapid transit service and the recent opening of Allianz Field. The green line station area plans for this area anticipate a mix of uses with higher densities, and we welcome conversations with property owner Kraus Anderson regarding their plans for the future of this site."
Signs posted on the retailers doors said that MoneyCenter transactions including check cashing will end Aug. 30.
Some people who live in the area say people in this community rely on the low prices at the Walmart to stretch their dollar and rely on its convenient location along the light rail. One shopper said she worries all of the changes to the area surrounding Allianz Field will force people to leave the neighborhood to find more affordable housing.
Walmart to close its only store in St. Paul
Charlotte Hunter, a resident of Cathedral Hill, said the absence of the major discount retailer from the Green Line would be a blow for many low-to-moderate income St. Paul residents like her daughter.
I think it impacts a lot of people, especially people who dont have cars — young single mothers who dont have cars and need diapers, Hunter said.
The store's pharmacy will shut down a week prior on September 13. Prescriptions at the pharmacy will be shifted to the Walmart on Twin Lakes Parkway in Roseville. But, employees will work with customers to move orders to a "convenient location."
Some saw the store’s lack of a full grocery department as a weakness that may have contributed to its demise. Rumors have circulated for some time that Walmart might relocate to the site of St. Paul’s old Sears store on Rice Street, potentially with full grocery service.
“First of all, one of the things that when I learned about the closure of Walmart was where are the employees going to go? So that’s been our first priority working with them,” St. Paul Councilmember for the Midway neighborhood, Dai Thao said.
They have long lamented not being allowed to have a full grocery store at that location (because they are on Cub's parking lot).
The store’s 333 workers will be encouraged to seek positions at other Walmart stores, the company said. Employees who don’t move to other Walmart locations will be paid through Nov. 8, and subsequently get severance pay.
The store’s closing “is in no way a reflection of their hard work serving our customers,” the news release said.
“In the Midway plan we call for more density, we call for more mixed use because of the light rail. This is a model that has worked in other parts of the country and we’re excited about that,” Thao said.
Many of the workers and customers at Walmart on Wednesday were East African immigrants or the children of immigrants, and several expressed disappointment at the news.
It impacts me because Im a neighbor, said Getachew Erago, 52, a longtime resident of Lexington Parkway. There is no other Walmart around.
Trina Berry, another customer, said the retail landscape has changed around Allianz Field, the Minnesota United soccer stadium, which opened at the former site of a Rainbow Foods grocery store this year.
Since theyve built that, there has been a lot of stuff closing, said Berry, a resident of St. Pauls East Side.
The Midway Marketplace was recently purchased in March by Kraus-Anderson Realty, the development division of the Minneapolis-based construction firm.
In addition to the Sears on Rice Street, recent major retail closures include the Herberger’s store in the Midway Marketplace, and the Rainbow that was torn down in the Midway Shopping Center to the west to make room for the 19,400-seat stadium.
On the flip side, the Target in the Midway Marketplace has recently undergone some interior improvements, including the addition of a liquor store and delivered-to-your car services in the parking lot. The location is believed to be one of the Minneapolis-based retailer’s busiest stores.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Walmart says it’s closing its St. Paul store on University Avenue next month.
After a careful and thoughtful review process, we have made the difficult decision to close the Walmart Supercenter at 1450 University Ave. W in Saint Paul,” Walmart spokesperson Tiffany Wilson said. “The decision is based on several factors including the stores overall performance.”
According to Wilson, Walmart’s pharmacy staff will work with customers to transfer prescriptions to other locations.