Upscale Wal-Mart - East Valley Tribune: Business

Upscale Wal-Mart

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Posted: Saturday, April 29, 2006 6:37 am | Updated: 3:26 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

The Wal-Mart Supercenter at the Crossroads Towne Center is setting the trend for Wal-Marts across the East Valley and across the nation, according to officials with the retail giant.

EASIER ACCESS

Display racks of general merchandise and hanging clothing are shorter, so people have uninterrupted views of the store. Inventory is kept underneath an item instead of on shelves high above.

“We’ve lowered all these profiles and the box stock is right there. All these used to be large warehouse type racks,” store manager Phil Michael said.

COOLER ELECTRONICS

As part of Wal-Mart’s overall efforts to expand their offerings, the electronics area features televisions that range from a $2,200 plasma TV to an $85 Durabrand color set.

While other Wal-Mart electronics departments are sectioned off from the main store, here “there’s no counter that’s over 60 inches high and you can enter electronics from any other area,” Michael said.

The store is among a handful to offer cell phone plans from a variety of providers, satellite radio, Dish TV service and Vonage, an Internet phone package.

CHANDLER AND GILBERT BENEFIT

Technically in Chandler at 2750 E. Germann Road, the store is part of Vestar’s Crossroads Towne Center, which sits on both sides of Gilbert Road — the dividing line between Chandler and Gilbert. The center also features a Sports Chalet, Ross and Barnes and Noble, among a host of retailers.

The store is at the Gilbert Road exit of the Santan stretch of Loop 202, which is currently the end of the line for the highway.

“I get customers saying that they’ll shop here over another Wal-Mart store,” said Kathy Horney, marketing manager.

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