Walmart Opens in Center Grove Area
Writer / Dann Veldkamp . Photographer / Jody Veldkamp
About 12 years after it was first proposed, the second Walmart in Johnson County opened June 20. The 163,273 square foot Supercenter is located at 882 S. State Road 135, just south of Smith Valley Road, placing it across from the Target and next to the existing Home Depot. It is open 24 hours a day.
The store and its location has been a concern for residents since the corporation first proposed placing a store in the area. Residents successfully contested the size first proposed; it was too large for the available property. However, the corporation finally managed to broker a deal with the City of Greenwood for the current location.
Because of the anticipated 2,000 additional cars per day, the construction plans included changes to both SR 135 and Smith Valley Road. The changes included widening, adding barriers to prevent particular turns and the marking of turn lanes.
The city does not consider these changes fully adequate for the busiest intersection in Johnson County and has tentative plans to add roundabouts at strategic locations at some point in the future. When the roundabouts are in place, there will be no left turn from Smith Valley Road to SR 135. This work costs more than $300,000.
Initial reports indicate that the barriers and special lights installed at the rear of the building are not as effective as hoped with some residents experiencing brightly lit rooms in the middle of the night. Walmart has promised to live up to its commitment to the residents of the Shepherds Grove subdivision. New light shields will be installed as soon as they arrive.
The new story will employ over 300 people; over 200 are on duty at any given time. There are 650 parking spaces. Services offered include a garden center, bakery, vision center, a pharmacy with two drive-thru windows, a Subway sandwich shop, hair salon and grocery store.