Wal-Mart plans distribution center in Bartlesville

Wednesday, August 14th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. (AP) _ Wal-Mart plans to build a food distribution center in Bartlesville in northeastern Oklahoma, the company said Wednesday.

Construction of the 893,900-square-foot distribution center will begin in the spring and it will be operational by the summer of 2004, according to the company.

The center will initially employ 400 people, most of them full-time workers who will be eligible for the company's comprehensive benefits package, the company said. Wal-Mart already employs 26,672 people in Oklahoma.

The company announced details of the center during a rally at the Bartlesville Community Center.

Officials said the distribution center will serve Wal-Mart stores in Oklahoma and several other states.

``The Bartlesville food distribution center will provide Wal-Mart the opportunity to better serve the growing number of Wal-Mart customers who shop for groceries at our stores in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Arkansas,'' said Rollin Ford, senior vice president of logistics for Wal-Mart.

The Bartlesville Development Corp., a nonprofit economic development program, and the state Commerce Department worked together over the past year to design an incentives package to entice the company to come to Bartlesville, officials said.

Details of the incentive package and the cost of the proposed center were not disclosed.

The Bartlesville site was chosen over proposed sites in other states, officials said.

Wal-Mart, based in Arkansas, has annual sales of about $218 billion and operates more than 2,740 discount stores and other sales outlets in the United States.

Internationally, the company operates more than 1,170 stores and employs 1.3 million people.